Hyde County Clinic Boosts Access in Rural Eastern NC

The Engelhard Medical Center celebrated the grand opening of its new 6,000-square-foot medical facility on Sunday, October 4, 2009.  The new center reflects a collaborative effort involving the community, the Golden Leaf Foundation, The Duke Endowment, the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust, and the NC Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Rural Health and Community Care.

The opening of the new facility culminated a six-year effort spearheaded by a group of concerned local citizens to return primary medical care to Engelhard.  Joseph Liverman, MD, retired after serving the community for 52 years, leaving the closest available primary care provider 50 miles away.  A modular facility was opened in September 2004; however, the health care needs of the community quickly outgrew the space. Since that time, the medical center’s board of directors has worked to purchase land, obtain funding, and construct the new facility.  With the new building, the residents of mainland Hyde County have greater access to much needed primary care services.

Participating in Sunday’s festivities were:
Alice Keeney, President of the Engelhard Medical Center;
Deputy DHHS Secretary Allen Feezor, who gave the keynote address;
Representative Tim Spear (D, Washington);
Dan Gerlach, President of the Golden Leaf Foundation;
John Price, Director of the NC Office of Rural Health and Community Care;
Thomas Irons, MD, with the ECU Brody School of Medicine;
and R.S. Spencer, Chairman of the Engelhard Medical Center, Inc. fundraising committee.

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