Bladen County Hospital is exploring the feasibility of adding an urgent care facility at White Lake for the summer months, according to CEO David Masterson. The idea is a pre-proposal to the Board of Trustees.
“This is all speculation at this point,” said Masterson.
Cape Fear Valley Health Systems is aware of the proposed clinic and supports the idea, according to Masterson. The equipment from the now defunct Clarkton Bladen Medical Associates clinic will be moved to the White Lake facility.
“The closure of the Clarkton BMA clinic is actually making it possible,” said Masterson.
The idea came about as the result of growth in the Bay Tree Lakes community and the numbers of tourists and campers staying at White Lake. During the summer months the population of Camp Clearwater can reach between 3,000 and 4,000 people, said Masterson. The campers encounter problems such as too much sun, insect bites and other minor injuries.
“It’s the type of business that normally would swell our emergency department in the summer time,” said Masterson. “By having an urgent care facility there in the community, we can prevent overcrowding of our ER at the hospital.”
During the off-season months, the facility would be staffed with a provider seeing patients by appointment only, but during the summer months, walk-ins will be accepted seven days a week. Also, the location of an urgent care facility at the lake would allow BCH to bring its outreach programs and preventative programs to the area.
“We have not determined a location yet and there will be forthcoming announcements regarding that,” said Masterson.