Why Springfield Clinic sees the Peoria area as a fertile region for growth
Springfield Clinic is a relatively new addition to the Peoria medical scene, but it's expanding rapidly. Since entering the Peoria market in August 2020, four new offices have opened in Peoria and Tazewell counties.
Cal Thomas, vice president of business development and marketing for Springfield Clinic, said the physician-owned medical group has operated for more than 80 years, and now includes more than 600 medical providers in a wide swath of central Illinois, stretching from Peoria to Effingham.
"What differentiates us from other opportunities in our market is, you know, typically physicians either join a hospital system, or another larger group, from an employee perspective," Thomas said. "And at the end of the day, what the clinic really offers is a way to truly manage your practice, have oversight, the autonomy that many of the physicians prefer these days. So ultimately, they are owners of their own practice. [And] they're a part of a larger network of multi-specialty physicians across the state."
Nearly 40 health care providers in the Peoria area are affiliated with Springfield Clinic. That includes practitioners specializing in general surgery, colorectal surgery, plastic surgery, allergists, primary care physicians, OBGYNs, and pediatricians.
Thomas said Springfield Clinic has been interested in the Peoria market for some time. Several area physicians reaching out to them to explore possibilities showed there was some mutual interest, Thomas said.
"We're very excited about how things have been going. And, you know, we expect that to continue. There's a lot of healthcare services in the market that are needing to expand," Thomas said. "And you know, at the end of the day, the message that we hope gets out is that we're here in the community, we want to care for the community, we want services to stay in the community, and the physicians that we've interacted with understand that. And so that's in large part why we've seen such a large amount of growth over the last 15 months."
Thomas said Springfield Clinic considers itself a partner to the regional hospital systems, not a competitor.
"It is absolutely our intent to partner with the hospitals and to do it in a way that is most beneficial for our patients," he said. "And for them, we want the hospitals to be successful. Our physicians, you know, prefer to have the ability to have a say in their practice and maintain some of that autonomy. But at the end of the day, we are here to partner. We partner with over 17 hospitals throughout central Illinois. So, we've done that for a long time. And we're looking forward to doing the same thing in the Peoria market."
Springfield Clinic currently operates in Peoria, Pekin, Morton, and Peoria Heights.