CHP addition part of Care Point reboot

Care Point Medical Director Dr. Jonathan Appelbaum (left) and President/CEO Rob Renzi (right) speak with reporters during a recent press briefing.
Photo by St. Clair Murraine
Elizabeth Emmanuel, CEO of the Downtown Improvement Authority, is a patient at Care Point where she sits in the lab.
Photo by St. Clair Murraine

By St. Clair Murraine
Outlook staff writer 

Since opening a little more than three years ago, Care Point Health and Wellness Center has become known as a place where the Southside’s underserved go for healthcare.

Now it’s targeting the more affluent that live in surrounding communities not far from the healthcare facility on the corner of South Monroe and Magnolia Drive. As part of reshaping its image, administrators announce that Care Point is accepting Capital Health Plan members.

A lengthy list of partnerships with other healthcare providers was also announced at a media briefing last Thursday. They include mental health services with the Apalachee Center, Bond Community Health Center and Southeastern Center for Infectious Diseases.

Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare Family Medicine Residency Program and the FSU College of Medicine were also among the announced partners.

Administrators are hoping all of that will help to elevate any kind of image concern about the 27,000 square foot state-of-the art health center. 

“We do a lot of grass roots effort, too,” said Patty Ballantine, Chief Operating Officer and Clinic Director. “Pre-COVID we were going out into the community so that people know there is a safe place to come. We will give quality healthcare.”

Care Point’s latest campaign won’t change what it does for the underserved community, Ballantine said.

“If you come in the door and you say you don’t have any insurance we don’t ask you any questions about financial income, stability or anything like that,” she said. “We just say great; let’s get your information and get you an appointment.”

Services include primary care, pharmacy, lab services, dental, radiology, prescription delivery, infectious disease services, x-ray, and mental health.

Now that it’s accepting CPH members, Care Point is making a push to attract downtown workers, the 5,000 residents and even those in the Southwood area. The advantage Care Point has over most other health centers is being able to provide one-stop-shop medical service.

Dental service is available on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. for individual 18 or older. Care Point also operates from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays.

Transportation is also available and Care Point has provided rides for patients who live as far south as Apalachicola, said Rob Renzi, President/CEO at Care Point.

But the Southside and downtown remain the primary target areas.

“We feel that we are positioned prominently in being able to service new residents and new developments on the Southside and downtown,” said Renzi.

In a news release before the briefing, Renzi said, “We believe in making health care available, affordable and accessible to everyone in Tallahassee.” 

Elizabeth Emmanuel, CEO of the Downtown Improvement Authority, said she has found the services at Care Point appealing. She especially likes that she could see a doctor, get lab work done and pick up prescriptions in one visit.

She called the service “a game changer,” adding, “Care Point is an incredible asset to our community.

“I think that level of convenience is key, especially for people who are frequently busy professionally and personally. To have things delivered to your door is an additional level of convenience in today’s society.”

Care Point is also providing COVID-19 vaccines to anyone 16 or older. Doses of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine that were administered last Friday wasn’t a first for Care Point, said Medical Director Dr. Jonathan Appelbaum.

“We have been administering COVID-19 vaccines to frontline workers and seniors since December 2020,” he said. “I’m extremely excited that we have opened up our vaccine clinic to the general public.”