Pinehurst Surgical Holds Gala Opening for New Facility
A crowd of more than 200 came out Friday for the gala grand opening of Pinehurst Surgical's new 131,135-square-foot, $24 million facility in FirstVillage.
Carmen Hooker Odom, secretary of the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services, and several others spoke.
Odom heads the largest state agency, with 19,000 employees and a $14 billion operating budget, charged with "protecting the health of seven million North Carolinians." The department administers Medicaid, covering 800,000 poor North Carolinians who can't afford health care.
"Pinehurst Surgical is on the forefront of research, delivering services and is on the cutting edge -- one of the oldest an largest private surgical practices in the country," she said.
The practice moved into its new state-of-the-art facility July 17, 2006 -- the anniversary of its founding in 1946.
"This 60th birthday celebration is a milestone for this practice in Moore County and this community," Odom said.
Odom recognized state Rep. Richard Morgan, the House speaker pro tem. Morgan, who lost his bid for re-election in the May Republican primary, has represented Moore County for 16 years. Odom praised Morgan for his compassion and awareness of "the people in the shadows."
Dr. William Johnstone, president of Pinehurst Surgical, thanked First Citizens Bank for lending money to the practice to help build the facility on land owned by FirstHealth in a new medical subdivision on Memorial Drive across from FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital. He acknowledged Marshall-Erdman, the design architect on the project.
He thanked FirstHealth CEO Charles Frock for his support, the Pinehurst Public Works Depart-ment and Pinehurst Surgical CEO Bill Edsel for his hard work and envisioning the need for the facility a decade earlier.
"A lot of hours were put in, persistence and cooperation" John-stone said,
The facility offers a number of new features, including a biomedical research and demonstration department and physical therapy.
Johnstone noted that Pinehurst Surgical, which has made four moves since its beginning in the basement of the old hospital in 1946, still operates in the spirit of its founding doctors -- Michael Pishko, William Hollister and Clement Monroe.
"People are responsible for success," Frock said. "You have a first-rate medical practice, but a support system is needed to allow the staff to fully develop and exercise their skills to the highest potential.
"I congratulate you for your foresight and boldness. I'm delighted you are in the neighborhood with FirstHealth -- partners in the past, partners in the future."
Pinehurst Mayor Steven Smith congratulated the practice for building this "magnificent new surgical clinic and choosing to locate it in Pinehurst."
Smith, who recently suffered from a torn ligament, said he has already availed his self to the clinic as a patient.
"What a pleasure it was to be able to receive at one location an X-ray, MRI, diagnosis and office visits," he said. "What a great and efficient experience it was to be a patient here."
Smith said the "real good fortune that we have here in Pinehurst is that we are blessed with the greatest group of physicians, nurses, technicians and support staff. Thank you for being here and for the care you provide."
Smith, Cynthia Bradley, executive vice president of the Moore County Chamber of Commerce, and Chamber board member John Capasso cut a ribbon.
Capasso thanked the surgical practice for its membership in the Chamber and for allowing Edsel to volunteer for the Chamber.
Dr. Peter Cox, vice president of Pinehurst Surgical, supervised the closing of a time capsule into a wall panel inside the lobby by Ronald Garner, who was born May 22, 1946. He was among the first 100 babies Pishko delivered at the hospital.
Elise Goodwin, the most senior staff member who began working at Pinehurst Surgical in 1956, helped Garner close the time capsule.
The time capsule, which contains 150 items, will be opened July 17, 2046, on the 100th anniversary of the clinic.
Johnstone donated a pottery pitcher made by local potter Joe Owen for the capsule. A cancer patient presented the pitcher to Johnston. It will be auctioned for the benefit of FirstHealth Hospice and Palliative Care.
Sara Lindau can be reached at 693-2473 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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