Last week I spotlighted the tremendous presence Beebe Healthcare has in Sussex County. I noted its popularity, evidenced by more than 200 letters written to The Cape Gazette by happy patients and their families over the past few years. I also offered an answer to one of the most frequent questions Active Adults agents get from new arrivals: How hard is it to find a good doctor?
The bottom line is that it might take 6 months or even a little longer to get an appointment with a primary care physician as a new patient. This is largely because our population in Sussex County increased by more than 26 percent between 2010 and 2021, and is now above a quarter million and counting. As evidenced by those letters and lots of anecdotal evidence from friends and colleagues, many people are happy with those doctors and with the overall health care they’re receiving.
But there’s more to health care than Beebe – particularly if you live in the center of the state or northward. Bayhealth is central Delaware’s largest health care system, with large hospitals in Dover and Milford. It’s an organization that has won many awards and one that’s in the midst of a significant expansion of services for women and children while continuing its impressive leadership on preventive health with broad access to testing and vaccines for COVID-19, flu, the RSV virus and Monkeypox.
Equally important is its broad range of accessible clinics and specialty centers throughout Kent and Sussex Counties, where you can find high quality care for cancer, cardiopulmonary care, surgery and rehabilitation, emergency and trauma care and much more.
I don’t have an answer to the question of how long it might take to find a good primary care physician or specialty care through Bayhealth but the organization has certainly made it easier to do so with its Web-based “Find a Doctor” database. You can also find care by specialty. Bayhealth has more than 400 physicians, with a growing presence that will hopefully keep up with our continue population growth.
Take Smart Steps for Staying Healthy on Your Own
As I researched these health care posts I kept thinking about all of the ways to get healthy and stay healthy with the hope that you can avoid significant medical care for as long as possible. The great news on that front is that it’s easier than ever if you live in Delaware thanks to our wide array of fitness and recreational options and the deep agricultural roots that ensure an ample supply of healthy food is available year round.
If you live in central or Sussex County you can learn about many ways to stay in shape that are especially suited to those of us who are 55 years old and older. From playing pickleball to joining a walking or biking group to practicing yoga, there are so many options for becoming more active in retirement or continuing the healthy lifestyle that’s brought you to this point.
We’re also very pleased with the ever-expanding fitness and recreational options available in so many 55+ Communities, as noted on our Web site, the vast majority of new neighborhoods being built have pools, pickleball and/or tennis courts, club houses with organized fitness activities and – in many cases – designated walking trails. Developers of these neighborhoods recognize the tremendous value homeowners place on these amenities because they want to exercise and socialize close to home, so I expect this trend to continue.
This is all over and above the other wonderful resource we have in our state park system. From long and invigorating walks along the beaches and nature trails at Cape Henlopen State Park to kayaking, hiking, biking and more at Trap Pond State Park in Laurel and the Assawoman Bay Wildlife refuge in Fenwick, you can get lots of fresh air and exercise within an easy drive of your new Delaware home.