Morgan’s Wonderland founder expands services


SAN ANTONIO – You really can’t miss the Multi-Assistance Center at Wurzbach Parkway and Thousand Oaks Drive.

“It’s the size of three White Houses,” said Gordon Hartman, philanthropist and founder of ultra-accessible Morgan’s Wonderland theme park and San Antonio Scorpions professional soccer team.

The $45 million, 165,000 square foot building, called “the MAC,” is essentially a one-stop shop offering medical and non-medical services — from medical appointments and therapy sessions to legal meetings and possibly haircuts. hair treatments, manicures and minor surgeries – for people of all ages with disabilities and special needs.

Hartman said in initial renderings of the facility, the MAC was much smaller, at around 40,000 square feet, but as more and more interest in the revolutionary new approach came from community organizations, they had to expand their plans.

“This has never been done before. And it’s unique, so people, as they’ve studied it, want to be part of it,” he said.


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So far, Morgan’s Wonderland has partnered with 30 community organizations, including the Center for Health Services, San Antonio Children’s Hospital, Community First Health Plans, Communicare, Sponsel Eye Experts, Happy Ohana Smiles Dental Clinic, San Antonio Lighthouse for the Blind. & Vision Impaired, Any Baby Can, San Antonio Food Bank, ConnectAbility, UnitedHealthcare, San Antonio Housing Authority and Via Metropolitan Transit.

Roberta Dorn said she started coming to the facility last month with her 17-year-old granddaughter, Alice Dorn, and was delighted that so many providers were signing on. Alice is legally blind and suffers from cerebral palsy as well as chronic lung disease.

“I’m trying to see if all of her specialists will see her here,” Dorn said while waiting for Alice to complete a physical therapy session at TEAMability. “Hopefully that’s all she really needs without us having to run all over town.”

It helps that The Mac is right next to Morgan’s Wonderland, where Alice often takes advantage of the park’s wheelchair swing.

The building follows the same bright color scheme as Morgan’s Wonderland and features extra-wide doorways to accommodate wheelchairs, sound-absorbing floors and wall panels, and family restrooms with adult changing rooms and showers.

Most townspeople have heard the story of how the Hartman family’s personal experience inspired the launch of Morgan’s inclusion initiative and the opening of the park in 2010. now 29 year.

“We often refer to Morgan as one of the luckiest, you know, because she has her doctors and her therapist and a loving mother and father to be her navigators,” Gordon Hartman said. “She has so many things that allow her to get what she needs.”

The MAC is a way to help other Bexar County families get the access they need to do the same for their loved ones.


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Hartman said they have recognized that a big part of providing better care for people with disabilities is removing some of the economic barriers, such as the lack of reliable transportation, but also reducing the amount of paperwork completed with each provider. .

The current health and social care system is so fragmented and uncoordinated that people can fall through the cracks, especially if they age outside of certain programs. This will not be the case for the folks at The Mac as they will all be part of a single system or model of care.

Starting next week, those who sign up to become a MAC member will undergo an admissions process and will be matched with a navigator to guide them through any services they may need. Client information will be recorded in this newly developed electronic medical record that is easily accessible to any agency or organization in the system.

“Accountability is key with something like this,” he said. “We have to have that kind of discipline if it’s going to work.”

The public is invited to visit the installation from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. The opening event includes an appearance by actor Joe Mantegna, who plays FBI agent David Rossi on the TV show “Criminal Minds” and has an autistic daughter.

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