Complete Care opens in Wildwood

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 Shaela Gonzales, 6, of Wildwood shows off her face paint during the grand opening of the Complete Care facility on New Jersey Avenue. 
 Shaela Gonzales, 6, of Wildwood shows off her face paint during the grand opening of the Complete Care facility on New Jersey Avenue.

 WILDWOOD— A million-dollar health care facility opened to Wildwood residents and visitors last week, about a year after Complete Care presented the project to the city.

After receiving $1 million in grant money, the Complete Care network has opened a new facility on New Jersey Avenue that will see about 6,000 patients annually. The facility will operate at the Wildwood Housing Authority, so the project will also renovate the authority’s building. 

Complete Care is a network of 18 other health care centers throughout Cape May, Gloucester and Camden counties, provides primary medical, dental, and behavioral health care to about 50,000 patients annually. Opening Wildwood’s facility brings the network to 19 total centers.

In about a year’s time, the center has revamped a former office and meeting space, and created a 4,500-square-foot facility with six exam rooms, a dental-care area and other amenities.

Available services include primary care, pediatrics, OB/GYN, behavioral health, podiatry and dentistry.

Emily Paul, a spokeswoman with the network, said that Complete Care was able to receive the $1 million in federal grant money to open the center because Wildwood is considered medically underserved.

That determination is based on statistics about Wildwood’s demographics, including the number of primary care providers, infant mortality rates, and those living under the poverty line.

Paul had previously cited Wildwood’s high unemployment rate, the area’s dependence on seasonal jobs, as well as the number of nearby jobs that do not offer health insurance, as reasons why the city was chosen for the health center as well.

By moving the facility into Wildwood, officials with the network said they are making health care more accessible to many that need it.

Hermenia Riveria was at the grand opening for the center last Thursday, Aug. 16, with her granddaughter, Shaela. Complete Care hosted a block party in celebration of the center’s opening, and offered free health screenings, as well as face painting, balloons, and caricatures for kids.

Riveria said she lived in the nearby apartments by the Complete Care facility on New Jersey Avenue. Being able to walk down the street to see a doctor, she said, was much easier than taking the bus into Cape May Court House.

While making health care more accessible is a major goal for Complete Care, Paul said the network is also reaching out to hotels and local businesses, in hopes they will let vacationers know that the center is there if they need it.

“This center is not just for people who absolutely need us because they don’t have health insurance,” Paul said. “It’s a good alternative for people on vacation,” Paul said. “It’s a great option because you won’t have to deal with an emergency room or urgent care center.”

Wildwood Complete Care will also be used as a “school-based” health center. This means that school children from Wildwood will be seen at the site during the school day with parental permission as recommended by the school’s nurse. Students will be transported to and from the center by a vehicle owned and operated by the network.

“It’s a benefit for parents who find it hard to take off of work to bring their children to the doctor,” Paul said.

Wildwood's facility is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, and from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesdays and is located at 3700 New Jersey Ave.

Christie Rotondo can be emailed at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

 The new million-dollar Complete Care opened in Wildwood last week, and the area is designated as medically underserved. 
 The new million-dollar Complete Care opened in Wildwood last week, and the area is designated as medically underserved.


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