Chesterton Tribune

Francisan ER facility dedicated: 'A hometown healing place'

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By KEVIN NEVERS

Three years after the Franciscan Alliance first envisioned a cutting-edge free-standing emergency medical facility in Chesterton, the dream has come to pass.

On Thursday, the Chesterton Health & Emergency Center on Indian Boundary Road was dedicated and blessed.

It will open for business—24/7/365—on Monday, March 19.

The facility will be staffed by board-certified emergency medicine physicians and includes an on-site lab and CRT and MRI imaging services, a two-patient trauma suite, specialized suites for geriatric care and sexual assault treatment, and a community room for educational events.

In addition, primary and specialty physicians will have their offices there, with out-patient services available from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The free-standing model in particular “will allow patients to be evaluated, diagnosed, treated, and released in a timely manner,” said Dr. Jim Callaghan, president of Franciscan St. Anthony Health. “Anyone who requires admission to the hospital will be transported to Franciscan St. Anthony Health by an on-site ambulance service. The focus is on customer satisfaction.”

“We are very proud of this facility,” said Sister Jane Marie Klein, chair of the Franciscan Alliance Board of Trustees. “But we are more proud of the people who made this happen, compassionate, joyful people.”

“Our mission is to bring to Chesterton and Porter County the highest quality care you’ve been waiting for and you deserve,” added Brenda Rogers, director of emergency services for Franciscan St. Anthony Health. “This is a hometown healing place.”

It’s also something else, Chesterton Town Council President Nick Walding, R-3rd, noted: an economic driver. For years the old Jewel/Osco building stood vacant, the nearest thing to blight in town. But the Franciscan Alliance’s $22 million investment in Chesterton has not only revitalized that stretch of Indian Boundary Road but will serve as the northern anchor of a healthcare corridor extending south and including the Addison Pointe nursing home on Dickinson Road, the Lakeshore Bone & Joint Institute at Coffee Creek Center, and Porter hospital’s new facility at U.S. Highway 6 and Ind. 49.

“It’s a one-stop shopping experience for Chesterton patients,” Walding said. Its 48,000 square feet include 12,000 square feet for future expansion, and it has created 70 to 75 full-time employment opportunities.

The Rev. James Meade then conducted a Gospel reading, Luke 7:1-10, and the Most Rev. Dale Melczek offered a prayer of blessing: “By the grace of Your Holy Spirit make our Health and Emergency Center a place of healing and a center of love. Grant that, comforted in their illnesses, the patients will quickly regain their health and joyfully thank You for the favor they have received.”

 

 

Posted 3/9/2012