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Spectrum Health opened an integrated care center on East Beltline Avenue, top, in 2014 and recently began construction on a similar medical campus off 10 Mile Road NE in Algoma Township near Rockford. The new facility (bottom) is expected to open next year. Spectrum Health opened an integrated care center on East Beltline Avenue, top, in 2014 and recently began construction on a similar medical campus off 10 Mile Road NE in Algoma Township near Rockford. The new facility (bottom) is expected to open next year. Courtesy PHOTO AND rendering

Spectrum Health continues push to integrated care campuses with Rockford site

BY Sunday, October 16, 2016 07:13pm

The medical campus under construction west of Rockford in northern Kent County follows a move by Spectrum Health to concentrate care across its footprint into one-stop locations. 

Spectrum Health expects to open the Algoma Township-based, nearly $10 million Integrated Care Campus in the summer of 2017 in an outlot at the Rockford Meijer site. Architecture firm TowerPinkster handled design work for the new campus and Rockford Construction Company Inc. is serving as the general contractor.

The 30,000-square-foot, two-story facility will become Spectrum Health’s fifth integrated care campus to combine primary care physicians, specialists and diagnostic medical services under one roof to make it more convenient for patients and physicians.

A sixth integrated care campus is planned for the Ada area in 2017.

The integrated care campuses are designed to make it more convenient for patients when they’re referred to a specialist or need to get a diagnostic test. For physicians, the campuses make it easier for them to consult with colleagues when needed, while the sites are also conducive for care teams to get together to go over cases, particularly for patients with chronic illnesses.

Spectrum Health couples the consolidation of multiple physician offices to a new campus with the deployment of services such as medical imaging and specialists.

Rather than having doctors spread out across several leased locations in an area and diagnostic services based elsewhere, the consolidated care setting has generated higher patient and physician satisfaction scores and should eventually lead to better costs and quality, said Julie Lepzinski, senior vice president and chief operating officer for the Spectrum Health Medical Group.

“Gone are the days that all patients will come to the medical hub or health center,” Lepzinski said. “Patients want access, a lower cost of care, and they want that experience in their community. Spectrum really took this seriously and said, ‘How do we create this integrated care concept that doesn’t add costs but decreases the footprint of multiple different sites and brings them together so that it improves the experience for the patient?’”

When complete, the Integrated Care Campus near Rockford will house physicians in internal medicine and pediatrics care, family medicine, an urgent care center, a diagnostics lab and X-ray, and potentially rehabilitation, Lepzinski said.

Spectrum Health developed its first integrated care center in Holland in 2012 and opened another on East Beltline Avenue in Grand Rapids Township in 2014. A similar center opened in June in Ionia, while a campus opens in December in North Muskegon, where Spectrum Health acquired a physician practice last year.

Work began this summer on a much larger medical campus on the south end of Grand Haven that will use the same care model and include an outpatient surgical center. The 125,000-square-foot, $55 million project, known as HealthPointe, stems from a joint venture between Spectrum Health and Holland Hospital and is targeted for completion in 2018.

Spectrum Health has just begun to gather and analyze data on how integrated care campuses affect cost and quality, Lepzinski said. Early research has shown reductions in visits to urgent care centers and emergency rooms by Spectrum patients who receive care at one of the existing campuses.

Surveys with patients who receive care at the Holland and East Beltline campuses also have resulted in “extremely impressive scores,” Lepzinski said.

Patient satisfaction rates at the East Beltline Avenue integrated care campus increased to between 95 percent and 96 percent from the mid-80s, she said. Scores for family medicine alone improved from 88 percent to 92.6 percent.

The scores indicate the percentage of patients willing to recommend the center to others. 

Satisfaction rates among physicians and staff who work at the integrated care campuses have improved as well, Lepzinski said.

“What we’re seeing is a continuous improvement not only in the patient experience but also in the employee and the provider experience,” Lepzinski said. 

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