Navy's top doc shares plans for Gulfport Seabee health clinic

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - By Trang Pham-Bui – bio | email

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) – The "top doc" for both the Navy and Marine Corps is on a fact-finding tour of Navy medical facilities in the region. His first stop was Tuesday at the Seabee Base in Gulfport.

Vice-Admiral Adam Robinson spent the morning examining the exam rooms and listening to the concerns of leaders at the Navy Branch Health Clinic. It was his first visit to the Gulfport base since becoming Navy Surgeon General three years ago.

Robinson seemed impressed with the medical services the base provides every year to more than 6,000 mobilization personnel and 30,000+ patients.

"The tour thus far has been absolutely outstanding," said Robinson. "I see here in Gulfport a blending of all of the best that we need to provide in Navy medicine for all the beneficiaries that we are privileged to care for."

Robinson is on a fact-finding tour of Navy medical facilities in the southern region.  He stopped in Gulfport to discuss plans to replace the Seabee Base's 42 year old health clinic.  His vision is to build a new, 59,000 square foot building on the property right across the street.

"The whole trailer concept, I'd like to stop that," he said. "I'd like to go to fixed constructed buildings."

The Substance Abuse Program will move from another location on the base into the new facility. The new center will also house a SMART Clinic, which will offer orthopedic and sports medicine, physical therapy, and occupational therapy.

"And I think save a lot of time and a lot of concern and have a concentrated effort of keeping them here on post and able to come, be treated, and get back to their jobs much more quickly," said Robinson.

"Oh, this is going to be great for the base," said LCDR Cristi Peck, the Officer in Charge of the clinic. "It's going to be great for the community and almost double our size here, so we'll be able to actually provide more services."

The new clinic is expected to cost about $27 million. The design phase will start next month and construction should get underway in 2013.

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