The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

November 24, 2013

Doctor happy with new practice


BECKLEY — Dr. Mary McKelvey opened the doors to her new internal medicine practice Sept. 23 at 240 George St. in Beckley.

“This is fantastic!” she said at the end of opening day. “I’m exhausted and exhilarated at the same time!”

Dr. McKelvey has been serving patients in the area since 1989 and is a member of Raleigh County Medical Society and American College of Physicians. She graduated from University of Pennsylvania Medical School and completed her internship in internal medicine at University of Pennsylvania Graduate Hospital and her residency at Graduate Hospital in Philadelphia. She also has served as clinical assistant professor of medicine at both West Virginia School of Medicine and West Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine.

McKelvey describes her approach to patient care to be “a patient’s adviser, confidante and source of medical knowledge. I have never been a dictator, although sometimes doctors have to make some tough decisions. I never lose sight of the fact that the patient is in control of his or her body and ultimately, he or she makes the decisions.”

While she covers all aspects of internal medicine, she has particular interests in helping people with weight problems — and without any judgment. She knows what it’s like, having weight issues in her adult life until she had successful gastric surgery.

She is an expert in nutrition and can counsel patients about bariatric surgery, dietary modifications, exercise and medications to assist with weight loss. Additionally, she is interested in behavior science, psychiatry and sleep disorders.

All that said, however, the joy of serving her patients overshadows her interest in the scientific aspects of medicine.

“My favorite aspect of being a physician is the privilege of being allowed to be a part of the lives of my patients,” she says. “Sometimes my schedule runs a little behind because I could talk with my patients all day. I’m really trying to work on that.”

Having been in southern West Virginia for 24 years, McKelvey loves the fact that she has long-term personal and working relationships with the people here. “Beckley is a great place to practice and be a small business owner,” she says. “The people are friendly here and we have an excellent business environment.”

Being a business owner and having her own practice were never on McKelvey’s radar until recently. She always had great ideas for having her own practice, but she never thought it was possible. Doctors are doctors, not businesspeople, she thought.

McKelvey knew that if she were to start a practice, the conventional way would not be best for her patients — or herself. “It would be very difficult to devote my attention to my existing patients and try to start a new business at the same time,” she said, “so I never gave it much thought.”

Her son, Victor Rendon, gave it thought, though, and discovered Vaught Inc.

After talking with McKelvey and understanding her requirements, Vaught CEO Christopher Vaught and Clinical Director Laura Wallace knew they could deliver a turn-key solution so she could literally walk in the door and start seeing patients with a minimal cash outlay on her part.

“Three of our strengths are starting businesses, medical practice management and medical staffing,” said Vaught. “While we had not performed all three for one practitioner, we had all the elements in place to make it happen for her.”

Through the coordination of two of its companies, Vaught Inc. is providing all of McKelvey’s back office and administrative support: office setup, practice management and staffing. All the while, McKelvey retains ownership of the practice and makes all strategic decisions.

The staff at Vaught Inc. knows how to start businesses, having conceived and constructed five of its own. Vaught Inc. negotiated and secured the best terms for the practice’s financial accounts, insurance, utilities, phone and Internet service, medical equipment and all supplies, even down to paper clips.

Vaught designed the office and procured all furnishings.

“Vaught Inc. created my dream office — even better than my dreams,” said McKelvey. “My office is clean, beautiful and comfortable.”

MedMatrix Solutions, a Vaught Inc. company, handles the administrative details of running McKelvey’s practice. The company takes care of all patient billing and collections, credentialing, provider enrollment in third-party payers, electronic health records (EHR) implementation, medical equipment leases, accounts payable, employee payroll processing, advertising and media, and supply ordering.

Indigo Health, another Vaught Inc. company, manages all aspects of staffing. The company sourced, hired, supervises and pays all nurses and reception personnel. It also provides day-to-day administrative support in terms of human resources.

McKelvey is accepting new patients at her 240 George St. location and can be contacted at 681-238-5947.