Health Access Center gets new name and fresh perspective

Published 4:12 pm Monday, March 11, 2013

Although the hospital doors of Chilton Medical Center still remain locked, adjacent to the building sits the Health Access Center, treating patients with a new name and a fresh perspective.

“We are doing the best we can with the situation we have been presented with,” Jon E. Binkerd, M.D., said. “We wanted to change the name of the center to demonstrate that we are specialists as well as reflect that things are changing and changing for the good.”

The Health Access Center was renamed in January to the Chilton Specialty Clinic with six physicians treating patients: podiatrist Dr. Darron Barrus, ob/gyn Dr. Francois Bloudeau, ear nose and throat-skin cancer care Dr. Charles Brentall, orthopedics Dr. Kenneth Taylor, gynecology Dr. Patricia Sanders and general surgeon Binkerd.

Although the clinic is open five days a week, all six doctors do not practice every day with one of them alternating each day at the clinic.

Binkerd came to CMC in September 2012 specializing in general surgery, both emergency and elective.

Now, Binkerd spends his time commuting back and forth to Prattville Baptist Hospital where he has been given temporary privileges to perform surgery and treat patients at PBH.

Binkerd acknowledges the situation is not ideal as he would ultimately like to have the ability to perform surgery at CMC but remains optimistic CMC will allow him to treat patients without driving the distance.

“Oftentimes, time is tissue,” Binkerd said. “It will be nice when we re-open to have the ability to perform surgery on patients who are now traveling a bit farther to be treated.”

Binkerd can still perform minor surgeries at Chilton Specialty Clinic and can use his admitting privileges at PBH to call ahead and admit someone from Chilton County to Prattville Baptist.

“I have also called the area schools and informed them that if there was something where they needed the services of a surgeon, I am here to help,” Binkerd said. “If a child has a laceration I can work on that here at the clinic.”

Binkerd said he has seen a small decline in the number of patients he treats in Chilton County at the clinic but has seen patients traveling from Chilton County to Prattville.