March 3, 2006

VUSN to provide care to Shelbyville plant

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Lynn Matrisian, Ph.D.
Photo by Dean Dixon

VUSN to provide care to Shelbyville plant

The Vanderbilt University School of Nursing's clinical practice arm has signed an agreement for its fourth area employer-based clinic.

Starting this week, VUSN-trained Nurse Practitioner Joe Geiger will provide employee health care needs at Sanford Corp.'s Shelbyville Plant, where Sharpie markers, uni-bal and Paper Mate products are produced. The workforce ranges from 600 to up to 1,000 during the preparation for “back to school” season.

“Manufacturing employees seem to universally feel like companies are taking away their benefits year by year, but Sanford added a benefit of major value to the employees and their families — convenient, high quality care with no co-pay,” said Caroline Portis-Jenkins, R.N., clinical director of Employer Health/Van-dyCalls.

Like with its Lewisburg and Maryville locations, Sanford employees will be able to receive primary care services, occupational health services, pharmacy/prescription management, wellness and preventive care at the nurse-practitioner run clinic. As a result, the company expects to better maintain employee health care costs and increase productivity due to less time lost to off-site health care appointments.

“We are really excited about starting the clinic,” said Howard Broadfoot, Sanford plant manager. “Our plant is in a rural area and it's difficult to see a doctor. Now our employees can walk across the hall to take care of 90 percent of the things they used to have to go to outside health care providers for, and it won't cost them anything.”

Sanford is a subsidiary of Newell Rubbermaid, a Fortune 500 company, and has three plants in Tennessee.