By Buffy Calvert
Come one! Come all! The Andes Health Center is open to people from new-born to geriatric. Walk into the light, airy new building with its high ceilings and plentiful windows. Step up to see Tracey Hood, the office administrator. Need blood drawn? A vaccination? A physical for school, camp or work? Urgent care, such as a minor injury? Or just want to meet Dr. Susan Fiore for regular care? You are welcome.
Nurse Janine Sprague will fold down the Stow-a-Weigh (yes!) and ask you to step up (or roll on with your wheelchair) for a weigh in. Then you will be ushered into one of the 4 well-equipped exam rooms.
All your records are kept electronically. If you have other records in the Bassett Health Care System, the staff can access them. If they need to consult with specialists or have tests read by other doctors in the system, it is easily arranged from right here in Andes. If you need x-rays or other special hospital services, they will arrange them.
Nurse Sprague has lab facilities on site to run some tests. Others, she will send out. You will receive the results either directly or, if you wish, on-line through MyChart, a Bassett medical account which allows you secure access to your own health records.
Dr. Susan Fiore, who is Board Certified in Family Practice, says that the Center “is the nicest facility I’ve ever worked in!” She grew up in Queens, New York City, trained as a Physician’s Assistant, then went to SUNY Downstate Medical School in 1989. Longing to live in a more rural place, she chose Fleischmanns in1998 and set up practice in Margaretville. By the time she moved on to Bassett, the idea of an Andes Clinic was already in the works. As a family practitioner with a 22 minute commute, she was the perfect choice of physician to staff it. If the clinic becomes busier, a P.A. will be added. His/her office is ready.
Dr. Fiore loves it in Delaware County, the hills, the 4 seasons, the beauty of nature. She just may bring her fishing rod someday soon and try to catch a trout in the Tremperskill that rushes so temptingly through Ballantine Park.
The facility is staff-friendly with a good flow of rooms, a kitchen/lunch room and splendid equipment. It is also patient-friendly with broad corridors, windows in every room, non-skid carpets and pleasant, pastel paint. Chrystal Holmes, housekeeper, “keeps it all brand-new,” as Dr. Fiore puts it. Landscaping, including a “rain garden” behind that nice wall in the front, is on the horizon.
Best of all is the skillful friendliness of the staff: a receptionist eager to help, a knowledgeable nurse with a gentle touch, and a doctor who takes time with you, listens, makes you know you are in good hands and has all the expertise of Bassett to call on. Everyone on staff commented on how welcoming the Andes community has been
The Center hours are 8-5, Monday-Friday. Come see for yourself at the Open House on May 18th from 10-12.~