One of Jackson’s greatest quality-of-life amenities is access to high-quality health care providers, as well as fitness and wellness facilities. The local medical community includes Jackson-Madison County General Hospital, the 642-bed flagship hospital for West Tennessee Healthcare; LeBonheur Children’s Hospital, which has offices in Jackson; and The Jackson Clinic and Tennova Healthcare-Regional Jackson — all providing families with cutting-edge care and a comprehensive roster of services to address their needs close to home.
West Tennessee Healthcare, which in 2017 celebrated 67 years serving the Madison County region, continues adding services to keep pace with population growth and developing needs of the community. In July, the health care system opened the new freestanding Spire Rehabilitation Hospital in partnership with HealthSouth. The system also entered into a partnership with one of the region’s largest primary care practices to give patients access to an even larger pool of providers.
“We are really fortunate to have a health system the size and scope of West Tennessee Healthcare in a community of our size,” says Vanessa Patrick, director of strategic development for West Tennessee Healthcare.
“The system offers a wide range of services and partners with physicians from some of the nation’s top training programs to care for the entire West Tennessee region. Patients don't have to spend time on the road to get the care they desire. Our patients are able to stay closer to their families, and they don't have to take off work, make a long commute, or deal with bigger city issues like traffic and congestion. State-of-the-art health care is available in our community every day.”
Patrick says the health care system's commitment to the community extends beyond critical and urgent care.
“We care for people in some of the most difficult moments of their lives, but we are also really blessed to care for people in some of the happiest moments of their lives. It's important to us to be that health system that the community wants by their side and wants to turn to for all their health and wellness needs,” she says.
Picture of Health
To that end, West Tennessee Healthcare opened the LIFT medical fitness center, which offers a host of fitness and wellness classes, activities and equipment, including three indoor fitness and therapeutic pools, rehabilitation and therapy services, nutrition courses, massage therapy and even a healthy café. Patrick says West Tennessee purposely located the center downtown to attract the city’s growing number of millennials.
“As we look to the future, it's going to be important for our patients to be as well as they possibly can when they face different health-care problems. So we’ve invested a lot in ‘wellness,’ and that’s something we're very proud of,” Patrick says.
LIFT is one of nearly a dozen fitness centers in Jackson. They include Anytime Fitness, ATC Fitness, D180 Fitness, Gold’s Gym, Jackson Sport & Fitness Club, 9Round Jackson, Planet Fitness, Pure Barre Jackson and Solus Performance Training, signaling the community’s commitment to fitness and well-being.
“People don't just look for nice golf courses these days. They look for parks and bike paths and fitness facilities and amenities, says Matt Joiner of the Marx-Bensdorf Cycling Team. "Exposing these folks to our great city shows that we are a vibrant and growing community that places a premium on physical wellness.”
Events for Staying Active
Marx-Bensdorf partners with the LIFT Wellness Center Cycling Teams to bring the Rockabilly Gran Prix cycling race to Jackson each year.
“We wanted to show the local community the health benefits of cycling, even if they don't race," Joiner says. "Our plan was to expose as many people as possible to the beauty of the sport and inspire them to, at least, get their old 10-speed out of the garage, clean the dust off, pump up the tires and head out for a ride."
Another event that encourages people to get fit and stay active is the Andrew Jackson Marathon in April, which is the oldest in the state and a Boston Marathon qualifier. The annual race has been happening since 1972 and winds through the renovated downtown, along the University of Memphis Lambuth Campus Arboretum, along tree-lined residential neighborhoods and around the medical center area. Racers can opt for the double-loop full marathon or the single-loop half marathon.