Cullman Regional to open first health park in Alabama
Special to the Enquirer
Cullman Regional has announced plans to open the first of its planned “health parks.”
This new concept assembles many different types of health services into a single setting. According to officials, such health parks should be viewed from the perspective of the many delivery models that share the goal of delivering integrated clinical care to patients.
“Health parks are one way health systems can respond to both the demand for integrated care and the need for access to customers,” Cullman Regional CEO James Clements explained.
The new Cullman Regional – Hartselle Health Park is designed to offer an extensive number of outpatient services in the same location to meet both existing and future patient demand.
Health parks are one response to the steady increase in demand for outpatient care that is not tied to a hospital.
“The trend in healthcare is to focus on access, cost structure and convenience,” Cullman Regional VP of Marketing Lindsey Dossey said. “Developing innovative outpatient campuses addresses all of these objectives.”
Cullman Regional’s new Hartselle Health Park will be located so as to provide the community with convenient access. The concept is to use the health park to bring services into the community, eliminating the need for people to drive long distances to hospitals.
Additionally, patients can immediately get follow-up tests after doctor visits and won’t need to drive to another location to have their specimens collected.
Another benefit of the health park, according to Cullman Regional, is that it is cheaper to build.
Hospitals are usually congested, in terms of density of building and structures. This often forces people to build vertically – which is more expensive.
Phase 1 of Cullman Regional’s first health park will open in Hartselle in May 2021. Phase 1 will feature a specialty physician clinic to provide specialty care to Hartselle and the surrounding communities.
Phase 2 of the Hartselle Health Park will feature an Urgent Care Center and an Imaging Center to offer imaging services.
“Health parks are a step toward integrated care,” Clements said. “This means the model is consistent with the care integration requirements of medical homes and accountable care organizations.
“The real benefit to the community is that health parks can be built to accommodate the healthcare needs of each community.”