WHITE LAKE — Cape Fear Valley Bladen Medical Associates-White Lake is open and taking patients, the company announced Thursday during a ceremonial ribbon-cutting.
“We are really proud of what we are doing here in Bladen County,” Cape Fear Valley Health CEO Mike Nagowski said. “It’s important to have local health care. There are some things that you shouldn’t have to drive far for.”
The new practice will join Cape Fear Valley’s other sites in Bladen County, bringing its total to five family medical practices. Bladen Medical operates in Elizabethtown, Dublin, Clarkton and Bladenboro.
Health-care providers at the White Lake site will be Dr. Jose Vergara and family nurse practitioner Jennifer Smith.
Smith has been a nurse practitioner with Cape Fear Valley Health since 2014 and was previously at Hope Mills Family Care. Information on Vergara was not available.
The White Lake practice is being added at least in part because of what Cape Fear officials are seeing at the organization’s Elizabethtown site.
“This year, we have had 841 discharges,” Bladen Hospital COO Roxie Wells said. “That’s about a 10 percent increase from last year. Also, Express Care, clinics and emergency services have helped 10 percent more people than last year.”
The Elizabethtown hospital also saw 162 births last year, according to Wells.
While health-care leaders may be looking at numbers and growth, locals see the added benefits to having a medical center in White Lake.
“This will be very good for tourism,” said White Lake Commissioner Tim Blount.
“I am so thankful they are so close,” remarked Elizabethtown/White Lake Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Dawn Maynard, a White Lake resident. “I had to visit recently for my back, and during my entire visit I was treated wonderfully.”
She added, “We love to see Bladen County grow.”
Cape Fear Valley White Lake is located at 273 White Lake Drive.
Cape Fear Valley Health officials, Bladen County elected officers, and White Lake leaders held a ribbon-cutting ceremony Thursday for the new medical practice in White Lake.
White Lake Commissioner Tim Blount spoke to guests about the impact the new medical practice would have on tourism.
Chrysta Carroll can be reached by calling 910-862-4163 or emailing email@example.com.