Marshfield Clinic to build new hospital in Eau Claire
Posted: June 24, 2016
Marshfield Clinic Health System (MCHS) announced last week that it intends to build a new hospital on the site of the soon-to-be former Plaza Hotel & Suites, 1202 W. Clairemont Ave., Eau Claire. As part of the new "Caring for the Chippewa Valley" plan, a hospital will be developed with an attached cancer center on land the clinic has purchased near its Eau Claire campus. MCHS officials said owning and operating a state-of-the-art hospital in Eau Claire is an important move that allows the organization to offer the highest level of care locally, while gaining more control over the cost and quality of care it has provided to the community for more than two decades.
"Data from the Wisconsin Hospital Association shows residents in the Chippewa Valley face some of the highest health care costs in the state, and building a new hospital puts MCHS in a strong position to start to change that. Our "Caring for the Chippewa Valley" program makes us a truly integrated local health care system. This allows MCHS to maximize efficiencies and start to reduce patient costs while providing an even higher quality of care and a great patient experience," said MCHS CEO Dr. Susan Turney, who added, "We've essentially had two legs of a three-legged stool in the Chippewa Valley - world class outpatient care at multiple local facilities, along with insurance through Security Health Plan of Wisconsin. Adding inpatient care with our own, modern hospital with connected cancer care services gives us the third leg and puts us in a position to make a real difference on care levels and cost for patients in the region."
Dr. Narayana Murali, the clinic's chief strategy officer, said that MCHS is in the process of evaluating and determining the optimal size and scope for the new hospital and will share more information, including an anticipated construction budget, when available. He said the new hospital will enhance specialty services that are currently provided in the Chippewa Valley, including heart care, orthopedics and sports medicine, general surgery, plastic surgery, ENT, neurology, obstetrics/gynecology, bariatric surgery, vein care, pain management and pediatrics.
"Integration of advanced computer technology, state-of-the-art equipment and better communication tools will deliver even better health care in the Chippewa Valley. So much of health care-from record-keeping to surgery scheduling to patient monitoring, is now based on digital technology. MCHS, through its Marshfield Clinic Information Services, already has that technology in place," said Murali, who added that the Plaza will continue operating until December, 2016.
Demolition of the Plaza is expcted to take place this winter. Groundbreaking for the new hospital is expected in spring, 2017 and the cancer center is anticipated to open by fall 2017. The hospital is slated to open in 2018. TBL