Cook Medical Center History

Cook Medical Center began in a private residence at 306 East Fifth Street. It was operated on the second floor by Dr. Ethridge Hall and Dr. R.C. Woodard; the first floor was the main residence. When these two physicians moved, Dr. H.W. Clements and Dr. L.R. Hutchinson took over and were later joined by the Dr. Clements’ son, Dr. Fred Clements.

In 1946, the county commissioners decided to upgrade the healthcare facility and move it to its present location. State funding was denied; Cook County did not qualify. However, the county had received a private donation of $40,000. The group voted to proceed with the plans while the citizens of Cook County raised more money. Cook Medical Center opened at its current location in July 1950. It was owned and operated by Cook County and the Hospital Authority with approximately thirty beds and a small emergency department.

The South Wing was added in 1963 with funds provided by the United States government, State of Georgia, Cook County, and its citizens. The addition included the operating room suites, the labor and delivery suites, approximately fifteen rooms, and 16 semi-private room beds. This doubled the patient room capacity for the hospital. The Hospital Authority at that time included J.J. Parrish, R.M. Sineath, R.H. Robinson, Roy B. Allen, L. Roy Patten, H.C. McClendon, Elmer King, Allen Parrish, Jr. and Lamar Whidby.
Memorial Convalescent Center was constructed in 1971 opening with an 80 bed capacity for residents. An addition followed later with 15 beds. By 1979, Cook Medical Center was purchased by Dr. Russell Acree. Dr. Acree and a Board of Directors then operated the hospital. Other physicians were recruited.

The Board soon voted to remodel the North Wing, Emergency Room, and Intensive Care Unit, which added two more ICU beds to the existing two. Some semi-private rooms were converted to private rooms with bathrooms, and other semi-private rooms had bathrooms added. This allowed more convenience for the patients and the nurses.

In 1997, the Company was accredited by Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations. This recognition marked a great achievement reached by Cook Medical Center.

In 2005, Cook Medical Center upgraded and renovated the facility. Patient rooms on the North Wing of the hospital were renovated. New flooring and wallpaper were installed throughout the facility. Several departments were relocated to meet the needs of our patients. In June 2005, the community attended an Open House to celebrate the history and future of Cook Medical Center.

In 2008, renovations began on the South wing and 3 patient rooms were transformed into Labor and Delivery suites (LDRP’s). In April 2009, an Open House was held to celebrate Cook Medical Center's new Labor and Delivery wing.

Through the years we have helped generation after generation reach better health. Our organization has been striving to serve the needs of our region since we were established. We here at Cook Medical Center are loyal to our community and will continue to strive for excellence in healthcare.

Being part of the community has been an important goal throughout the years, and with your help and loyalty we can continue to provide health services that you can depend on.