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Lisa and Douglas Whitman stand outside their newly opened nurse apparel store, NurseRx, at 447 Main Street in Bennington. (Elizabeth Conkey)
Lisa and Douglas Whitman stand outside their newly opened nurse apparel store, NurseRx, at 447 Main Street in Bennington. (Elizabeth Conkey)
Lisa and Douglas Whitman stand outside their newly opened nurse apparel store, NurseRx, at 447 Main Street in Bennington. (Elizabeth Conkey)

ELIZABETH A. CONKEY

Staff Writer

BENNINGTON -- NurseRx, a locally-owned nursing apparel and accessory store is now open at 447 Main Street.

Lisa Whitman, the proprietor and a nurse in the area for 15 years, always had the idea of opening such a store, as she struggled with the annoyance of traveling more than an hour to buy the things she needed for work.

It wasn't until this past January, however, when she severely injured her knee, tearing her meniscus, that Whitman finally had the time to bring her idea to life.

"I had the time on my hands," Whitman said. "So, I thought it was time to try my idea out and see how it went."

With the help of her husband Douglas, Whitman rented retail space and proceeded to revamp the interior with new carpeting and a fresh paint job, which, according to the couple, took about two months to complete.

The store officially opened on August 31, but, according to Whitman, there was no "grand opening," per se.

She and her husband plan to celebrate with such an event within the next month or so, which will include giveaways and other special promotions.

"We still have a lot more inventory coming in," she said. "Once we are fully stocked, we want to officially invite the community and local nurses to come in and check out the store."

Found inside NurseRx is a wide selection of nursing gear, ranging from scrubs to shoes to scrub caps to lab jackets and socks.

Also in stock are a variety of stethoscopes, jewelry, badge lanyards, and nurse-themed gifts, including clocks, key chains, and Christmas ornaments.

According to Whitman, there are items in the store for every budget, with prices starting at $1.50.

The most expensive items in the store, Whitman said, are the selection of Sanita clogs, a shoe popular among the nursing community. The clogs retail for $80.

"I think it's good for the medical profession to have a place locally where they can buy good quality uniforms and equipment," Douglas Whitman said. "Especially since it's run by a person who has actually been in the business for a long time and knows what they need in order to do their job well."

The Whitmans say they are optimistic about what the future holds for their business and are thrilled with the response from the community thus far.

"People seem very excited to see us here and see what we are selling," said Whitman. "I definitely see the store succeeding and even expanding in the future."

Overt the next few months, the couple hopes to expand their product line to include EMT uniforms and apparel, as well as chef uniforms. For the moment, however, they are "strictly a nursing store."

Lisa Whitman added that the sense of community in the Main Street area from other local business owners has been "very nice," making her transition from a career in nursing to one in entrepreneurship easier than anticipated.

"I've had so many neighboring businesses come in and wish me luck," Whitman said. "You don't see that often these days. Everyone has been so friendly."

Visit Nurse Rx at 447 Main Street in Bennington, find them on Facebook, or call the store at 802-442-6000 for more information.

Contact Elizabeth A. Conkey at econkey@benningtonbanner.com or follow on Twitter @bethconkey.