About 200 people gathered at the $73 million WellStar health park in east Cobb on Thursday to celebrate its completion.
Reynold Jennings, CEO of WellStar, said the new health park, which is off Roswell Road, is the second to open in Cobb, and he said it will be convenient for locals.
“WellStar saw the growing need seven years ago — with the growing population — that we needed to provide services as close to home as possible,” Jennings said.
The WellStar Acworth Health Park, which is half the size of the east Cobb center, opened in July 2012 and served more than 100,000 patients in both its first and second year of operation, said Joe Brywczynski, senior vice president of the health parks department.
Candice Saunders, COO of WellStar, said she is happy to build off the success of the first Cobb health park.
“We’ve done very well at the first health park, and we’re excited about being in this east Cobb facility,” Saunders said.
The center will open to patients Sept. 15, and Gary Miller, chairman of WellStar’s board of trustees, said he hopes residents will make it the “one-stop shop” for their health care needs.
The new162,000-square-foot health park includes every step of treatment on its three stories, including a doctor’s visit, imaging machines and a pharmacy.
Patients can visit the center for routine checkups as well as urgent health needs, but they will not stay overnight at the health park, Brywczynski said.
For instance, someone who suspects they have a broken arm can come to the urgent care portion of the center, see a doctor, get an x-ray to confirm the bone is broken, get a cast fitted to the arm by a surgeon and pick up a prescription for medication all in one building, Brywczynski said.
Brywczynski said the convenience the health park offers will make it popular among the audience of 200,000 people it will target in portions of east Cobb, including Marietta and Roswell.
The urgent care center has seven exam rooms and two larger observation rooms that will be open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. every day of the year. The regular business hours for the doctors’ offices and pharmacy is 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
“All these urgent care patients are those where the injury does not warrant an emergency room visit,” Brywczynski said.
The urgent care portion of the health park is for people who have injuries that aren’t life-threatening, such as an ankle sprain or a knee injury. Instead of going to a hospital, patients can go to the health park for minor surgeries, Brywczynski said.
“This gives us the opportunity to only treat lower injury surgeries,” Brywczynski said. “They’ve got priority here.”
The imaging center inside the health park, which can be used to examine urgent care patients or non-urgent care patients, includes an MRI machine, a CT scan, two X-ray machines and two ultrasound machines.
The center also includes a physical therapy and exercise room for those who are recovering from surgery, which includes treadmills, stationary bikes and weights.
The East Cobb Health Park will have 25 doctors who are permanently stationed there as well as 75 doctors there part time. The doctors at the center include general physicians and specialists.
Cobb County Commissioner Bob Ott, who represents east Cobb, said he supports the goal of the center.
“It brings the services closer to the people, and it brings more health services to Cobb,” Ott said.