When Jonathan Connell decided to move his medical supplies business from Albany, Ga., to Fort Oglethorpe, he announced the change to his employees and asked who would like to come along. Six families chose to relocate with Connell.
Connell’s business, MedSTAT , which sells medical supplies, is on Battlefield Parkway, a block from Dietz Road. Connell has overseen the massive renovation of the former gymnastics building himself. The result is a design worthy of any much larger city. Around ten stairs lead to the entrance, but for those who cannot navigate them, there is an outdoor elevator that can accommodate a wheelchair.
Inside, offices sport all-glass front walls and the many cubicles for workers are roomy. A conference room is equipped with a pull-down projector screen, a projector tied into the computer system, a built-in sound system, and brick and wood walls that offer contrast to ultra-modern furniture and large windows.
MedSTAT will hold its ribbon-cutting and grand opening on Jan. 11, including a special open house for the public from 5-7 p.m. The company is located at 3442 Battlefield Pkwy. and sells over 600 items and can special order items. Public hours are Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. To learn more, visit MedSTAT’s web site at medstatsupplies.com, stop in the store, or call 706-858-6260.
Behind the lobby and offices is the warehouse space that ships out medical supplies, from prescription containers, labels, gloves, bandages, diapers, syringes and needles to biohazard bags and containment units, pregnancy tests, drug screening kits, and any other supplies a doctor, clinic or other healthcare provider might need. The company services customers across the country.
"Besides offering good prices and customer service to healthcare providers," says Connell, "we sell to individuals. People are having to buy more of their own supplies today, pay more out-of-pocket for their healthcare, and they need a reliable and fair source for those things. We offer that to the public."
Connell’s ties to the area are strong and he refers to his move here as a sort of homecoming. He grew up in Dade County and Chattanooga and attended Notre Dame High School. His mother worked at Hutcheson Hospital for 45 years, and his father owns a business in Rossville and coached kickers this year for the Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe football team.
After high school, Connell enlisted in the Marines and served for four years. His next venture was running drug rehabilitation centers where he became interested in the need of healthcare providers for pharmaceutical-grade plastics and other supplies. In 2007, he launched a business to serve that need. "We’ll celebrate our eleventh year in 2018," says Connell.
MedSTAT also rents some items, like knee scooters. The company works with a third party to accept Medicare, Medicaid and some insurance where it applies. Connell emphasizes that his company does not carry any schedule drugs.
Connell and his business partner Todd Daughtry (also a veteran of the Marines) have a business philosophy that Connell refers to as "The 5 P’s."
Purpose. Connell wants his employees to feel what they’re doing serves a real purpose.
People. Connell wants quality people working for him. The company uses online evaluations to vet potential employees to make sure they’ll be a good fit and will be happy working at MedSTAT.
Process. Consistency is very important, says Connell. "You need to have systems in place and people must know they can depend on you to be true to your word, to fulfill your obligations and promises."
Product. This is the "P" that means a commitment to quality merchandise and customer satisfaction.
Profit/Loss. "We have a duty to not overspend or be wasteful," says Connell.
"I pride myself on running a good place to work, taking care of my employees as well as my customers," Connell says. "We’re always working to save our customers money and find just what they need. If we don’t have something in stock that someone needs, it’s likely we can get it for them."