The quality and availability of healthcare contribute greatly to making a desirable place to live. Fortunately for Oconee County residents, excellent healthcare from two outstanding hospitals is only ten miles away in nearby Athens.
Athens Regional Medical Center
Athens Regional Medical Center is a 350-plus bed, full service regional referral center and is part of Athens Regional Health Services, an integrated health care system that provides for the healthcare needs of a 17-county service area in Northeast Georgia.
Athens Regional features nationally acclaimed, comprehensive cardiac, vascular and thoracic procedures including open heart surgery; cardiac catheterization and vascular labs; a full-spectrum of advanced surgical procedures; minimally invasive surgeries; a Certified Primary Stroke Care Center; a neurosurgery unit; a free-standing outpatient radiology center and outpatient surgery center; adult and children's rehabilitation services; diagnostic and therapeutic oncology; Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and PET/CT Scanner; a neonatal intensive care unit, the Loran Smith Center for Cancer Support, the fully-digital Breast Health Center, an on-site Spine Institute and a user-friendly, interactive website (www.armc.org).
As the region's only Level II Trauma Center, Athens Regional is the designated hospital for advanced emergency and surgical care. Regional First Care is Oconee County's extended hour, walk-in medical facility. Services include occupational health (including ADA exams and immediate post injury workers' compensation cases), x-rays, treatment of minor illnesses and injuries, gynecological procedures, pediatrics, vaccinations, and many family practice procedures. A certified physician is on duty at all times.
St. Mary's Hospital
St. Maryâ€™s Health Care System is a non-profit Catholic health care system whose mission is to be a compassionate healing presence in Northeast Georgia. St. Maryâ€™s specializes in neurosciences, cardiac care, orthopedics, general medicine/general surgery, womenâ€™s, and childrenâ€™s health, and gastroenterology.
St. Maryâ€™s offers a 196-bed hospital at 1230 Baxter St., Athens, providing the nearest stroke, cardiac and general emergency care to Oconee County. St. Mary's also offers a host of services in Oconee County, including Oconee Heart and Vascular Center, Home Health Care/Hospice Services, Highland Hills Village retirement community, the Center for Alzheimer's and Dementia Care, and St. Mary's Outpatient Diagnostic, Rehab and Wellness Center, which features radiology, sleep disorders center, laboratory services, rehabilitation, and the area's only medical fitness center.
St. Maryâ€™s is proud to be the official health care provider for the University of Georgia Athletic Association and the first hospital in the Athens area to receive specialty certification from the Joint Commission in stroke care, heart failure care and knee replacement surgery.
Other Health Care Services
Also available are public health facilities, neighborhood health centers, and private physician groups to provide every medical specialty.
Locally, Oconee County residents are served by physicians providing family practice care, general/internal medicine, gynecology, and pediatrics. Other medical services offered include optometry, dental, orthodontal and periodontal.
There are several veterinarians located in the county to provide medical care for small and large animals.
Family Life Enrichment Centers, Inc. is a skilled nursing facility which provides healthcare to the elderly in a family-centered spiritual atmosphere in the picturesque rural setting at High Shoals. Comprehensive patient care is provided through planned and coordinated services and programs from Family Life Campus.
Magnolia Estates Assisted Living on Mars Hill Road is a retirement center with a comfortable home-like atmosphere with creative living for ambulatory adults.
Many healthcare needs can be addressed by the Oconee County Health Department. Services include family planning, maternal health, child health services, immunizations, blood pressure monitoring, food service inspection, rabies investigation, and home inspection for foster care. Other facilities serving Oconee County include the Northeast Georgia Mental Health Center, Mental Retardation Center, and Substance Abuse Center in Athens.
The First Responders Program, operated through the EMS office, allows residents to receive first aid before the ambulance arrives. Many of the First Responders are certified Emergency Medical Technicians.