Ground breaking set for new health care campus

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Main News Photo

MILBANK, SD (Sept. 18, 2014)  –  The Northeast South Dakota Healthcare Foundation (NESDHCF) will host a groundbreaking and blessing ceremony for Milbank’s new $23 million health care campus at 5:30 p.m. Sept. 30 at the new building site.


The new state-of-the-art 75,000-square-foot facility located on 18 acres in east Milbank adjacent to State Auto and the American Lutheran Church will bring the hospital and clinic under one roof. It will provide easy access to the 25 local and specialty providers that serve the Milbank health care community.

 “After many years of discussion and planning, we are pleased to be at the point of breaking ground on the new health care campus,” said Jim Gesswein, Chairman of the NESDHCF board. “This new facility will improve health care for Milbank and the surrounding communities, so we are thrilled to get started.”

 The new medical campus has been designed to help the staff focus on the increased need for outpatient care. The new facility will replace the current hospital which was built in 1968 and clinic which was built in 1984. The existing facility is not capable of meeting the changing landscape of health care delivery that focuses on expanding outpatient care and specialty services.

 The new floor plan allows for additional space in the surgical center to better accommodate same-day surgery. The current clinic is designed with six provider pods. There are currently eight providers working in this clinic. The new clinic will have nine pods. This growth will allow for expanded specialty services and help with recruitment of new providers.

 Combining the clinic and hospital into one large, accessible health care campus will improve access to specialty care, more privacy and better wayfinding.

 “Patients and their families expect their care to be convenient and easily accessible. Our new health care campus will focus on hospitality, comfort, access, convenience and quality,” said Natalie Gauer, Hospital Administrator. “This state-of-the-art facility will allow our providers to take the quality health care they provide to another level.”

 Site development will take place this fall. Bids for the structural phase of the project will be done in January with the remainder of the construction beginning April 2015. The estimated completion date is July 2016.The foundation has received overwhelming support from the community. The initial goal for the capital campaign was $4 million. Due to increased costs in completing the project, the foundation needs to raise $5 million. At this time the foundation is $850,000 away from this goal.“We are fortunate to have a community-owned hospital. We need the help of our community members to take this vision and turn it into a state-of-the-art facility that this community needs and deserves,” stated Gesswein.


After the building project is completed, ownership of the building will remain in the community under the direction of the foundation board.The foundation is contributing $4 million to the cost of the building project. This $4 million is earmarked from past lease payments and earnings. The remaining $14 million will be private financing on behalf of NESDHCF, which will be supported by an increased lease payment by Avera McKennan Hospital & University Health Center.

 “We are very excited about the future of health care in the Milbank area,” said Grant County Development Corporation Executive Director Bobbie Bohlen. “The quality of local health care is one of the most important factors in a community’s success. The new hospital and clinic project makes a powerful statement regarding the future of health care in Grant County.”


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