Whatley Health Services opens Aliceville clinic
By WVUA 23 News Student Reporter Peyton Newman
Thousands of residents have been left without a nearby healthcare system after Pickens County Hospital closed nearly three years ago…until now.
Whatley Health Services celebrates the grand opening of its new clinic in Aliceville on Thursday.
A lack of quality healthcare is an ongoing issue in rural areas in America, and Whatley Health is looking to combat this issue in west Alabama.
CEO of Whatley Health Services David Gay explained why this new clinic is so important.
“Well, I think people would benefit from it,” Gay said. “People are really excited about us coming there, and we’re really excited about going there. Again, any time you can provide healthcare, healthcare is so important to people. Any time we can go into an area where there’s not a lot of healthcare and provide good healthcare, we’re excited about it also.”
Nearly half of Alabama’s population lives in a rural area, according to Alabama Public Health. This poses major challenges and discrepancies to healthcare access.
Chief Medical Officer at Whatley Services Dr. Keisha Lowther says rural communities in particular are struggling with healthcare systems.
“I think, one, there’s a funding issue,” Dr. Lowther said. “So a lot of our rural communities are really hurting because they don’t have the income that’s necessary to support clinical health centers. And I think, also, that it’s really hard to recruit providers and physicians to rural health centers as well because we are seeing a health crisis, too.”
Whatley Health offers a range of services from family medicine to chiropractic resources and dental work. They will be bringing these services to Aliceville.