The Wellfleet health center — constructed in 1966 by the Association for Improving the Medical Resources of Outer Cape Cod (“AIM”) — has been a part of the Outer Cape community for more than 50 years. The structure is the oldest-standing community health center in Massachusetts.
While many of the center’s patients come from Wellfleet, a significant number are from other towns on the Outer Cape, including Truro and Eastham. Located nearly an hour away from the nearest hospital, the center has provided generations of residents and seasonal visitors with reliable, accessible primary care, various specialty services, and same-day treatment of medical conditions and injuries requiring immediate attention. The current configuration and condition of the facility is inefficient and does not provide for an optimal patient and family experience.
OCHS’ preliminary design for rebuilding the Wellfleet health center features an enhanced site plan that will allow for a more coordinated, team-based medical experience for all patients. The design will meet all accessibility requirements, and include critical medical technology, furnishings, and upgrades to appropriately support health services for year-round community needs. A more efficiently designed health center will satisfy the needs of our aging population, our younger families, and our summer visitors across the Outer Cape for decades to come.
The Wellfleet project is a complete renovation of the existing single-story structure, with new and reconfigured space. When completed by the summer of 2019, the renovated health center will realize a complete makeover with more modern amenities for the Wellfleet patient community.
The new Wellfleet Health Center will feature:
- Modern exam rooms for a wide range of patient services, including primary care and behavioral health visits. The rooms will be configured to foster greater collaboration among caregivers and an enhanced patient-centered delivery of services.
- Enhanced lab drawing space that will continue to be serviced by Quest Diagnostics.
- New Community Wellness space to enable community members to come together to focus on wellness, with special programs like yoga and nutrition.
- Healhy Connections insurance counselors to assist members of the community with health insurance eligibility and enrollment services.
- The existing Wellfleet Pharmacy, conveniently located one block from the health center, will continue to provide over-the-counter items and prescription fill and refill services to all.
OCHS opened a new health center in Harwich Port in December 2018 that integrates primary care, behavioral health and supportive services in a team-based model. The floor plan doubles our capacity to serve the primary care needs of the Lower Cape with a full staff of physicians, advanced practitioners, nurses, medical assistants, and dispensing pharmacy personnel.
The Harwich Port center also houses additional support staff members, a central WIC (Women, Infants & Children) program office, and a lab drawing service space. OCHS entered a 30-year lease on an existing two-story property at 710 Route 28 in Harwich Port to house this expanded Harwich health center and administrative offices. In March 2017, administrative staff moved into the second floor where a new patient call center was also opened.
Relocating and expanding the smaller South Harwich facility to Harwich Port enables OCHS to meet growing healthcare needs by providing new and essential services to more people. The new health center site has been built out to include 16 patient exam rooms and two behavioral health consult rooms to accommodate double the volume with a greater and smoother flow of scheduled visits.
The New Harwich Port Health Center features:
- 8 exam and consult rooms for primary care and behavioral health services. The rooms are divided into closely situated patient care “pods,” consisting of nine rooms each, to increase collaboration among caregivers and create an improved patient experience.
- A dispensing pharmacy, where OCHS provides outpatient medication to eligible low-income patients at significantly reduced prices through the Federal Drug Discount Program.
- WIC services to ensure optimal healthcare and nutrition for low-income pregnant women, breastfeeding women, fathers, and infants and children under the age of five.
- New community wellness space to enable community members to come together to share and grow the gift of wellness through special programs like yoga and nutrition.
- Healthy Connections insurance counselors have offices to assist more members of the community with health insurance eligibility and enrollment services.
- Lab drawing service space, not available at the former location in South Harwich.
- Accessibility to public transportation, ensuring that the new OCHS Harwich Port Center is within the reach of the entire community.