By Tamas Mondovics
Construction under the direction of BayCare Health System on St. Joseph’s Hospital-South, the first not-for-profit hospital to serve the growing SouthShore area is now underway in Riverview as heavy equipment began clearing the facility’s future 72-acre site for its official October groundbreaking.
The 352,000-sq.-ft. full-service hospital will be located at 6901 Simmons Loop Rd. in Riverview, approximately one-half mile east of the intersection of I-75 and Big Bend Rd., providing easy access to visitors by means of I-75 and U.S. Hwy. 301.
According to BayCare Communications Manager Lisa Patterson, the hospital itself will offer something for just about everyone, with 90 private patient suites, plus an additional 22 observation rooms.
“Our focus for bringing St. Joseph’s South to the SouthShore area is to give the community what it needs,” Patterson said. “The new hospital will offer residents not only a brand new healthcare center but a choice.”
Patterson emphasized that the property for the new hospital was purchased in the mid-80s. The company started the paperwork in 2005, which after much battle between HCA and BayCare Systems was finally approved in 2009.
Meanwhile, BayCare was nearing the completion of its St. Josephs-North hospital in Lutz, which opened in 2010.
The $225-million St. Joseph’s Hospital-South, is set to open in 2015, and will include an 80,000-sq.-ft. Medical Office Building housing a 30-bed emergency room, with all private examination rooms and 10 exam rooms dedicated to fast track patients.
The campus will also feature a 16-bed intensive care unit and a 14-bed labor and delivery unit and 22 rooms for patients needing observation.
The hospital will also feature operating suites and Interventional Cardiac Cath and Imaging lab.
First to be completed is a 40,000-sq.-ft., freestanding physician’s office building that will include physician offices, diagnostic imaging and outreach laboratory, with a target opening date of early 2013.
“The new campus will ensure that virtually all of our community’s health care needs could be met with the St. Joseph’s Hospital standard of experience and expertise,” Patterson said.
Besides having another choice for local hospital stay, for many the opportunity for employment also makes the projects exciting and worthwhile.
Patterson said that St. Joseph’s-South also brings approximately 500 jobs to the community, with staffing to begin in late 2014.
This news sounded particularly good to Tanya Doran, with the Riverview Chamber of Commerce.
“This is exciting news for the entire South Shore community,” Doran said. “The hospital will bring hundreds of new jobs to be filled with many long-term career professionals and future community residents. It will also bring other medical professionals and supporting organizations, all of which will add to the success of this vibrant and growing area.
As for the competition of another area hospital Doran said that the new campus will only serve to improve the level of medical care area residents deserve.
St. Joseph’s Hospital-South will be part of a network of 10 not-for-profit hospitals, outpatient facilities and services such as imaging, lab, behavioral health and home health care.
For more information about St. Joseph’s-South, please visit www.sjbhealth.org.
Caption: An artist’s rendition of the St. Joseph’s Hospital-South gives SouthShore area residents a view of a brand new full-service healthcare facility under the direction of BayCare Health Systems. Groundbreaking for the new hospital is scheduled for next month.