Wednesday, November 6, 2013
St. James-Santee Family Health Center has expanded with the opening of its new facility near Five Points in Georgetown.
The new, larger center at 422 North Fraser Street, adjacent to Tony’s Famous Pizza, will allow the medical staff to take care of more patients with an expansion of services, according to Chief Executive Officer Sandra Gilliard.
In September the center relocated to its new home from its previous Highmarket Street location.
Gilliard said in 2007 St. James-Santee Family Health Center saw there was a need in the City of Georgetown and took over a medical building on Highmarket Street.
“It had two examination rooms and we outgrew that building in less than a year,” she said.
Gilliard said the board of directors agreed to apply for a federal grant that would help with the expansion and relocation costs. She said there were more than 160 applications and St. James-Santee Family Health Center was awarded the funds.
She said the center’s three doctors and two nurse practitioners saw 6,000 patients last year and provided over 17,000 medical visits. Gilliard said she expects there will be at least 9,000 people who use the center’s services this year.
“We are a primary health care provider. Our mission is to provide comprehensive health care,” Gilliard said. Services include chronic disease management, behavioral health counseling, and discounted prescriptions.
“We are a federally qualified community health center,” Gilliard said, adding the cost to patients is based on income and family size.
She said having St. James-Santee Family Health Center keeps people from using the hospital emergency room for non-emergency medical needs.
“So many uninsured or underinsured people use the ER for primary care, for something they can be seen for in a physician’s office,” Gilliard said.
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