The Belpre campus of the Memorial Health System is getting to be larger than a lot of free-standing hospitals. The latest planned addition is a 57,000 square foot building, housing a new 24-hour, year-round emergency department, to be opened in the spring of next year.
Memorial's administrator cites a ten percent annual increase in e.r. patients at the Marietta campus.
"A lot of that growth has come from Belpre and Parkersburg as they drive up for our health services," says Scott Canley, President and CEO, Memorial Health System. "I can't say what percentage that is, but I believe it reflects our position in the community."
Memorial says it's the first full-service emergency department built away from a hospital in this area. The system last year opened an urgent care facility at the same location along U.S. route 50.
" We've looked at models in Columbus for Ohio Health and Mount Carmel System," says Dan Breece, D.O., the emergency department's medical director. "There is an apparent need for care and access to care in this community and this region of the county."
Construction is nearly complete on a 25,000 square foot building which will house a comprehensive pain management center. That is to be opened in july.
"The cooperation we've received from Marietta Memorial, the PM Company, has been a blessing to this entire city," says Belpre Mayor Mike Lorentz.
Especially in terms of the economy. Mayor Lorentz says the opening of the emergency center will make Marietta Memorial the city's largest employer.