River Region opens new health clinic

Published 10:10 am Friday, May 29, 2015

052915-Merit Health River Region ribbon cut-MAIN

RIBBON CUTTING: Merit Health River Region CEO Greg Pearson speaks during the ribbon cutting ceremony to officially open the new clinic  on U.S. 61 North.

Citizens of Vicksburg no longer have to travel across town to receive clinical treatment for pediatric care or allergies.

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“The new building brings state of the art care closer to our main campus, moving from an older building to our new medical office building. It’s a good segue for the future,” said Greg Pearson, CEO of Merit Health River Region.

Wednesday, Merit Health cut the ribbon and officially opened the doors to a new medical office building.

Pearson was appreciative of the crowd and said having the new medical office building 800 feet from the hospital is helpful in the event of an emergency. Patients are within distance from receiving care they need instead of driving around Vicksburg.

“This is truly a great day for Merit Health River Region,” Pearson said. “It took a lot of hard work from a lot of different people.”

Elected officials, other CEOs of hospitals and physicians came out to support this grand opening. Mayor George Flaggs, Sen. Briggs Hopson, Willis Thompson, Michael Mayfield and Bill Lauderdale were among those in attendance.

“Merit Health River Region has been an outstanding community health provider. We look forward to the continued partnership with this great hospital,” Flaggs said.

The new 64,000 square-foot building consists of three floors. The first floor is for therapy services, like aqua therapy, and houses the orthopedic clinic. It also features a new state of the art gym for physical, occupational and speech therapy.

The second floor consists of more primary care services such as family practice, internal medicine, podiatry and ear nose and throat pediatricians for kids.

The third floor is known as the allergy floor housing urology and rheumatology.

Fermika Smith, a clinic manager at the main campus, said the addition of the new building is very important to the city and raved about the specialties that will be in the new building.

“The Merit Health market is doing phenomenal and they’ve acquired a bunch of different hospital and this is just an added edition to River Region,” Smith said.

Other services given include orthopedics, sports medicine, an asthma clinic, diagnostic imaging and lab services.

Hopson talked about his history with medical care in the community and how he made rounds with his father as a young boy.

“It’s such an honor for me to be here and to talk about medical care in this community, because of what it’s meant not only to my family but everyone here,” he said.

He commended Merit Health for moving forward and not standing still with their investment in the community.

Hopson said employee payroll at River Region is $62 million dollars and pay a non-income tax to the community in excess of $11 million dollars.

Lauderdale also commended Merit Health River Region for their investment in the community.

Lauderdale said several main factors indicate whether a community is improving and is desirable for individuals to relocate; health care is one of them.

“This is a wonderful addition to the health care facilities in Warren County. It will stress a commitment that Merit Health River Region has to the community,” Lauderdale said.