Southwest Alabama Medical Center to Build New Hospital
8 Jul, 2009
STATE-OF-THE ART MEDICAL FACILITY ANNOUNCED The City of Thomasville, Thomasville Development and Planning Department and Southwest Alabama Medical Center are proud to announce that Southwest Alabama Medical Center (Clarke County Health Care LLC) finalized the formal purchase of 20 acres of property in Thomasville's new South Industrial and Professional Park for the purpose of constructing a new, state-of-the-art replacement hospital. Southwest Alabama Medical Center's long-time chief nursing officer, Lisa Sims, was recently named CEO of the hospital and will lead the organization through this process. "Our existing facility is over 45 years old. The changes in the way medical care is administered in today's world is much different than the 60's and 70's era in which this facility served well. Outpatient services are in much greater demand and the growth of the need for new inpatient services has placed a great burden on the space and functionality of our facility. In addition to family practice, internal medicine, cardiology and neurology, general and orthopedic surgery, we have in the last year added several surgical specialties including urology, ophthalmology and podiatry. All of these surgeons increasingly perform their cases in our current facility on an outpatient basis. Our new facility will be designed to better accommodate this increasing outpatient service trend," Sims stated. Thomasville is a unique market, centered in the middle of rural Southwest Alabama. This market serves a huge retail trade area as well as the center for all types of commerce. The new hospital will be the anchor in a newly developed, 60-acre medical and professional Park on U.S. Highway 43 along with various other medical related services. "To see this project move forward is a dream come true for our city and our region," explained Mayor Sheldon A. Day. "Thomasville has outpaced all rural cities between Tuscaloosa and Mobile over the last 15 years in population growth, retail growth, and industrial development. However, until recently, expansion of our healthcare services have not kept pace with the overall growth of Thomasville. That all changes today with this investment by Southwest Alabama Medical Center and their commitment to move forward with this new hospital facility." The new facility is slated to have 45 private patient rooms, a four-bed intensive care unit (ICU), an eight-bed emergency room, two operating and procedure rooms and expanded radiology services featuring nuclear medicine, and in-house MRI. The hospital is being built for the future with state-of-the-art technology and a plan in place for future expansion. "The City of Thomasville has been a great partner in working to achieve this milestone," says Anne Thompson, owner of Southwest Alabama Medical Center's corporation, Clarke County Healthcare, LLC. "This region is going to see big challenges in healthcare over the next few years and we intend to be a leader in bringing changes to Thomasville and the surrounding area through our new hospital and through partnerships and affiliations that will foster the extension of new health services throughout the area." "Last week, we received formal notification from Alva M. Lambert, executive director of the State Health Planning and Development Agency that upon receipt of the information provided him regarding the completion of certain tasks set out in our Certificate of Need (CON) application we have proven a firm commitment to the project. It is now time to move forward and get this project done. Although the financial markets continue to show signs of weakness, we are committed as ever to getting this project under construction as soon as possible," Thompson added. "Thomasville will be a center for new and expanded healthcare services in our region," exclaims Dottie Gaston, executive director of development and planning for Thomasville. "Mobile, Tuscaloosa, Birmingham and Meridian have traditionally had the resources and population growth enabling them to build new, expanded faculties. We believe that the residents of Thomasville and surrounding areas deserve to receive what is already high quality health care in a more state of the art facility. It is very exciting and will benefit our entire region. The new hospital and related ancillary service providers who locate in the new medical park over the next two to three years will conservatively generate an additional 50 to75 jobs in various medical fields."