The Winneshiek Medical Center Board of Trustees has invited the Ossian Crown Club to a future Board of Trustees' meeting.

At last week's meeting, the Board extended the invitation to the group to present "as early as, but not limited to, its March meeting."

"We will invite them at their convenience," said Board Member Clark Goltz.

The action came following information the Crown Club, a civic group from Ossian, has been circulating a petition asking WMC officials to consider opening an outreach clinic in Ossian.

The petition originated following the announcement from Gundersen Lutheran it will close its Ossian Clinic next month as the result of Dr. Ignatius Greene retiring.

"We learned about this petition to open a clinic there and I felt quite honored they would look to WMC for us to potentially fill that need. We looked at it in a general sense, that people from Ossian have made WMC their home. We currently have 80 to 90 percent of the market share and it's a pretty important group to us at WMC," said Dahlen.

Dahlen said she and WMC Clinic Administrator Dave Rooney went to Ossian to meet with Mayor Chuck Covell and Ossian City Councilman Tom Bushman.

"There are a lot of parameters we would have to look at. It's not just a slam dunk into the community and making that commitment ... But if people are serious about us coming, it would be nice to see if we could accommodate that request," said Dahlen.

Dahlen added having an outreach clinic in Ossian fits the mission of a county-owned hospital, but WMC officials need to be able to make the business side of it work.

"I think it would be nice to have that convenience for people and I think we'd be a good Main St. business partner," said Dahlen.

"I think the important thing is to listen to what they have to say and see what their expectations are," said Board President Ben Wyatt.

Board Member Karl Jacobsen asked about WMC services in Calmar, and Rooney responded the Medical Center has had a rehabilitation clinic there for six or seven years.

"We're there three to five days a week," said Rooney.

Jacobsen asked if it would be practical to have some sort of outreach provider cover both communities.

"We're deliberately trying not to assess it until we know what they want," said Dahlen.