The Kalamazoo-based Borgess Health began work in late August on the two-story, 65,000-square-foot facility that will house offices for primary care and specialty physicians such as women’s health and cardiology, plus medical imaging, diagnostic labs, physical therapy, occupational medicine, a sleep clinic and a pharmacy.
Occupancy is targeted for the spring of 2014.
Borgess now has medical offices spread across the Battle Creek area that handle some 50,000 outpatient visits annually. By consolidating many of those offices, plus adding medical services, Borgess can create a single, convenient destination for care, said Executive Vice President Patrick Dyson.
“We have had for a number of years a very strong service in and commitment to Battle Creek,” Dyson said. “It’ll strengthen our position in that region.”
Dyson likens the Battle Creek outpatient center to the Borgess Woodbridge Hills locations in Portage.
The project comes more than a year after Borgess competitor Bronson Healthcare Group in Kalamazoo acquired a majority stake in the former Battle Creek Health System, now known as Bronson Battle Creek. Although not a primary motivator, the Bronson-Battle Creek merger was part of the equation in considering and planning the new outpatient medical center, Dyson said.
“When you have a change in a marketplace, whether a health care organization or any other organization, you step back and say, ‘How do we continue to meet the objective and mission?’” Dyson said. “You look for the best way to adapt and change.
“So when we think of Battle Creek, we’re serving that community in a different way now.”
Changes occurring for years in medical technology and care practices enable health systems to deliver more services on an outpatient basis. Creating a single location with multiple services that provide greater convenience for patients is the primary driver of the project, Dyson said.
“Patients are looking for services, and if it’s not available, they’ll seek other pathways,” he said.
Borgess presently has seven primary care doctors working in Battle Creek and plans to add a few more at the new center, located at Capital Avenue and Beckley Road. Borgess may also house outpatient surgery at the center in the future.
Bariatric, vascular and general surgeries are potential services Borgess may eventually offer in Battle Creek, Dyson said.
“It may be something we consider in the future,” he said.
Borgess would require state certificate-of-need approval for outpatient surgery, as well as for some imaging services such as CT and MRI scans.
Construction on the outpatient center began last month with the awarding of $1.3 million in construction bids for excavation, concrete and asphalt work.
Columbus, Ohio-based architectural firm NBBJ is handling design work on the facility. AVB Construction in Portage serves as the construction manager.