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Tucked deep on the campus, past NorthBay VacaValley Hospital and the doctors offices of the VacaValley Health Plaza stands a gleaming tan building with a dramatic red tile roof slanting down.

It’s the 12,000-square-foot Surgery Center at NorthBay VacaValley that has served the needs of thousands of patients since it opened in 2007. Whether it be a cataract surgery, a colonoscopy, a tonsillectomy or knee surgery, patients can have it done and be on their way before the sun sets.

“My patients really appreciate the ability to come to this facility instead of the hospital,” explains Mounzer Al Samman, M.D., gastroenterologist, “because their surgeries can be scheduled more efficiently, and they can get in and out more quickly.”

The Surgery Center is a joint venture between NorthBay Healthcare and 10 local physicians, including Dr. Al Samman, as well as podiatrists, urologists, a general surgeon, ENTs, ophthamologists and orthopaedists.

When the Surgery Center was built, it was designed to offer more comfort and privacy for less serious surgical cases, because hospitals are geared to treat the sickest and most injured patients first, explains Elnora Cameron, vice president of Strategic Development for NorthBay Healthcare and chairman of Surgery Center’s operating committee. “The building has a lot of natural light, which also helps patients feel more relaxed.”

The Surgery Center has three operating rooms, two gastro-intestinal procedure rooms and two rooms specifically designed for pain management procedures. Pre-op rooms are completely private.

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