Rio Communities residents and officials attended a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Monday for Sina Medical, an urgent care facility that will soon open in the city. Pictured, from left, are Shawn Biazar, the general contractor; Maryam Bornaei Ph.D, the owner of the facility; Ron Gentry, who donated the building; and Paul Baca, CEO and president of Valley Improvement Association.
Clara Garcia | News-Bulletin photos

RIO COMMUNITIES—Valencia County residents will soon have access to a convenient choice for health care when a new urgent care facility — Sina Medical — opens its doors in three to four months.

A couple of dozen residents, public officials and others attended a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Monday at the facility at 382 Rio Communities Blvd. — just north of the Rio Communities City Hall. The 15,000 square foot, two-story building, which was donated by Ron Gentry, is currently undergoing renovation.

Maryam Bornaei, PhD, who acquired the building from Gentry, says she’s excited to bring the urgent care facility to the community and hopes to help the people of the area when it opens in three to four months.

“While going through school, I was doing my clinicals in Los Lunas, so I knew what was happening in (Valencia County),” Bornaei said. “I am also working in Belen at the urgent care, so I understand how we are short of health care facilities. I know there’s a need.”

Before receiving her doctorate in 2018, Bornaei has been a nurse practitioner since 2011 and a nurse for 12 years prior to that. She has experience working in a hospital, in an emergency room, family practice and in urgent care with Presbyterian.

The urgent care facility will be initially be open into the evening hours, and Bornaei hopes to offer hours during the weekends when more staff comes on board.

Sina Medical will be able to treat both adult and pediatric patients with non-life threatening injuries and ailments.

In the future, Bornaei hopes to bring in a pharmacist who can use the back of the building, along with a drive-up window. She said she’s talked to someone who is interested.

Bornaei said the name “Sina” comes from a Persian physician living in 980 BC, who brought modern medicine to the world. Many medical schools still use his books for instruction.
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Maryam Bornaei, PhD, owner of Sina Medical, hopes to have the facility open in three to four months.

Even before hearing about Gentry’s offer to donate the building he purchased from Valley Improvement Association last year, Bornaei said she had been researching the area for an assisted living facility. During the process, she learned what was needed and who the population was that needed to be served.

“To survive as an urgent care, you need to have a little more income from elsewhere,” Bornaei said. “It usually takes six months before insurance companies pay, and a lot of people in Valencia County use Medicaid. Therefore, I thought I would add a little more to it.”

Bornaei said she would possibly add a medical cannabis program, a medi-spa and IV infusions for depression, PTSD and chronic pain.

“I’m open to a lot of different practices, and I’ve talked to people who are interested in doing physical therapy and mental health.”

Other services Bornaei wants to offer in is x-rays and possibly an adult day care in the future.

“There is about 5,500 people living in the community without access to health care,” Bornaei said. “There are about 60,000 people who drive on the highway every day, so it’s a crowded place. Most of the geriatric population are veterans, so I’m also trying to get credentials with Veterans Administration. I really want to keep the prices as low as possible.”

Gentry, who initially hoped for a hospital provider to step up to the plate, said Bornaei and Sina Medical is the “next best thing.”

“I solicited for a full medical center, and I had a half a dozen inquiries from individuals,” Gentry said. “When Maryam emailed me her resume and business plan, I was very impressed.

“She had done a business plan that I’ve never seen the likes of before. It had all the statistics and I knew she had researched the area and how this facility can work.

“I’m confident that any space they have available will be filled up with individual services for the community. This is going to be a total game changer for Rio Communities.”

While Bornaei has a lot of plans for the future of Sina Medical, she envisions the building to be attractive for both her employees and patients.

“I want to make it where someone can come to get help and feel comfortable,” she said.

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Clara Garcia is the editor and publisher of the Valencia County News-Bulletin.
She is a native of the city of Belen, beginning her journalism career at the News-Bulletin in 1998 as the crime and courts reporter. During her time at the paper, Clara has won numerous awards for her writing, photography and typography and design both from the National Newspaper Association and the New Mexico Press Association.