October 15, 2007 - Posted at 5:55 p.m. CDT
McCRORY - In Woodruff County a new facility is taking a giant step into the 21st Century in terms of long term health and treatment of serious illness.
On Monday a brand new facility in McCrory opened it's doors to the public along a new facility with a new name.
Woodruff County Judge, William B. Simmons, Jr. told me," We've decided to name it the Woodruf County Health Center, we thought at this point in time we'd enter the 21st century and change the connotation of the health care facility so we'd thought we decided to go with that name. "
McCrory has long needed a new long term heath facility and Mayor Ronnie Pittman was sure that this would be a boon to the area for the local elderly residents.
Pittman says, "It's great for the elderly people of our community, they have the kind of care they need right here in the area, they don't have to go out of town, out of the county and it's going to be great for everyone in this area. "
The brand new county- owned facility employs over 100 staff members with the ability to care for nearly 100 residents, including in patient and out patient occupational, physical and speech therapy.
Rehab patient Ruth Richardson is very pleased with the facility and the care -givers. "The building is beautiful it's real nice, I think it's wonderful, they've been nice to me, everyone who works here is just as nice as they can be."
Among the honored guests was Arkansas Governor Mike Beebe who grew up near McCrory. Governor Beebe sees this facility as a cumulation and triumph for the county..
"We're here to celebrate the vision of community leaders and community activists who said were not gonna let quality health care leave Woodruff county."
One of the most anticipated and most needed facilities at the Woodruff County Health Center is the dialysis center. 8 chairs on the floor and 1 in an isolation room. This will cut down immensely the travel time that people in Woodruff county have to travel for that type of specialized medical treatment.
Health Center Administrator Gwen Brogdon says the need for the dialysis unit is to cut down the stress of travel on seriously ill patients. "If a patient has to travel thirty five minutes then have a three hour treatment and thirty five minutes back home, it's a big day for someone that ill." The closest dialysis unit is either in Newport or Searcy.