Last updated on May 13th, 2019 at 02:21 pm
Area hospital, clinics building new
or adding on as communities grow
Hospital construction and renovation projects are bringing new cardiac and women’s health-care centers to southeastern Wisconsin as well as updating some of the area’s health-care facilities.
St. Luke’s Hospital in Milwaukee, Waukesha Memorial Hospital and Community Memorial Hospital in Menomonee Falls are adding new units that will feature cardiac-care centers.
Community Memorial, Oconomowoc Memorial Hospital, St. Catherine’s Hospital in Pleasant Prairie, All Saints-St. Mary’s Medical Center’s St. Luke’s Health Pavilion in Racine and the Aurora Women’s Pavilion at West Allis Memorial Hospital will house women’s health-care centers.
“We needed to add services to meet the needs of the community,” said Kerry Freiberg, director of marketing for Community Memorial Hospital. “A lot of people were leaving the community for heart services. And we needed to update our birthing area and centralize our women’s services.”
Other hospitals in the area are expanding and renovating their facilities to accommodate increasing patient volumes and to update technology. An additional 107,000 square feet is being built onto St. Mary’s Hospital Ozaukee. The addition, as well as 36,000 square feet of renovated space, will serve increasing patient volumes, said Patricia Morrill, the Mequon hospital’s project lead for administration.
A survey of patient needs found the greatest need for expanded services in the outpatient and emergency departments, Morrill said. Therefore, new emergency, outpatient, testing and treatment facilities will be located in the addition and renovated area.
An addition to Elmbrook Memorial Hospital in Brookfield will house a new gastrointestinal unit as well as two more operating suites. The hospital was performing surgeries about one-third above its capacity, but the additional operating suites will ease the congestion as well make room for future patient volume increases, said Gigi Rutkowski, the hospital’s director of community relations.
“We’re considering growth in number of patients as well as growth of the surrounding community,” Rutkowski said. “As the community grows, so does our potential customer base.”
The new gastrointestinal unit, which will be known as the Center for Digestive Health, will include the hospital’s oncology unit. Gastrointestinal and cancer care are growing needs in the community, Rutkowski said.
In the 1990s, the wave of health care facilities building projects involved the creation of satellite clinics as a result of hospitals merging into systems, said Richard Galling, senior health care partner for Hammes Company, a Brookfield-based health care developer. The past two to three years, however, have seen a shift to a focus on improving individual hospitals, Galling said.
The health care systems formed in the last decade now are needs to improve their facilities, and individual hospitals are being updated, Galling said. Also, health care organizations are trying to anticipate the future health care needs of the aging baby boomer population, Galling said.
Plans are in the works for a new St. Joseph’s Community Hospital in West Bend, and hospital officials are trying to decide whether to build on a new site or on the campus of the current hospital, said Mary Beth Winkowski, hospital spokesperson. The cancer and mental-health centers, as well as some administrative departments would remain at the current hospital.
A feasibility study is under way for the new hospital, which would be a completely updated version of the current hospital, built in 1930 and renovated in 1947 and 1974. Specifics of the project, including size and cost, will be determined once the feasibility study is completed later this year, Winkowski said.
Aug. 17, 2001 Small Business Times, Milwaukee