With $1.75 million in grants, the Wright Center for Community Health established a primary care practice in South Scranton to treat previously underserved patients and found a home for its administrative and graduate offices.
“When we took a deep breath and looked at where we should be going in Scranton, it made sense to us to come to the edge of downtown,” said Linda Thomas-Hemak, M.D., CEO of the Wright Center for Community Health and president of the Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education.
The center received two grants from the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation to support the startup of the practice at 501 S. Washington Ave.
At the practice, which opened in December, patients have access to comprehensive primary care services, including medical, behavioral and dental care and addiction/recovery services, according to a news release. The site also serves as a hub for the center’s administrative and graduate medical education activities.
The new practice is expected to treat more than 7,000 patients annually, including underinsured, uninsured and low-income individuals, regardless of a person’s ability to pay.
The $950,000 capital grant helped convert the former warehouse into a clinical primary care space with 30 exam rooms; six of which are dedicated to infectious disease care. The practice also houses four dental operatories. This grant also covered medical equipment including ultrasound machines, EKGs and AEDs and other office necessities.
The Weinberg Foundation provided an operating grant of $800,000 which will be used over two years to support much-needed health care provider positions, including a pediatrician, a physician assistant, a nurse practitioner, a dentist and a psychiatrist.
“This is a very important hub for us in the humble city of Scranton... it gives us perspective about who we are as a region,” said Thomas-Hemak.