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story.lead_photo.caption St. Mary's Hospital sits on Mission Drive. SSM and MU Health announced in August 2018 they were negotiating the possible sale of SSM Health's St. Mary's Hospital in Jefferson City and Mexico (the former Audrain Medical Center) and their associated clinics, following SSM's decision to leave the Mid-Missouri marketplace. Photo by Kris Wilson / News Tribune.
For more news about the COVID-19 coronavirus, access the News Tribune Health section.

In an "effort to ensure the viability of our medical ministry in Mid-Missouri," SSM Health announced Wednesday it will close several clinics and retail pharmacy locations in Central Missouri over the next few months.

"SSM Health in the Mid-Missouri region had challenges prior to COVID-19, and as stewards of our resources, we must always look at how we can best sustain our ministry," SSM Health spokeswoman Jessica Royston said. "The COVID-19 pandemic has heightened our need to adjust to the current environment."

The affected SSM Health Medical Group Clinics and dates of closure include:

Fulton Family Medicine and Walk-in Clinic, April 30.

Vandalia Family Medicine Clinic, May 29.

Jefferson City Occupational Medicine Clinic, Aug. 28.

Versailles Family Medicine Clinic, mid-September.

The affected SSM Health retail pharmacies include:

Tipton Pharmacy, April 30.

Holts Summit Pharmacy, end of May.

"As a mission- and values-based organization, SSM Health is continually evaluating the most effective and efficient way to deliver the services our patients need while being good stewards of our resources," according to a news release. "These closings are unfortunate but necessary to improve operational efficiency and protect the overall health of our organization so that we may continue to provide exceptional service to our communities."

SSM Health officials said patients who see providers in these practices will be notified and offered care at alternate SSM Health Medical Group locations. Additionally, staff will assist patients with transferring their care, as needed.

"We are making every attempt to find other roles for our affected employees within the organization," SSM Health officials said in the news release.

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