ASHLAND -- OhioHealth will celebrate the grand opening of its Ashland Health Center in late January -- a mere 15 months after its ground breaking in November 2019.
The healthcare provider intends to introduce the community to its new $14 million facility, located at the intersection of Ohio 250 and George Road, with a virtual ribbon cutting ceremony on Tuesday, Jan. 26.
The OhioHealth Ashland Health Center will open to the public the following day, Wednesday, Jan. 27.
"What we've noticed is more and more of the population of this community has come down to Mansfield (for care), and one of our goals is to provide care local, to provide care very simply with great accessibility and affordability," said Vinson Yates, president of OhioHealth Mansfield and Shelby hospitals. "And we believe we can do that as we expand into Ashland."
The first floor of the 22,000 square-foot facility will function as an emergency care center. It will serve as an alternative to traditional emergency rooms, located at hospitals, offering full-service, ambulance-receiving emergency care 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year.
Key features of the facility include eight private patient rooms, a resuscitation room and advanced imaging capabilities, such as CT scans and x-rays.
The emergency department will be led by medical director Dr. Garrett Norvell and staffed with the same skilled, board-certified physicians as OhioHealth hospitals.
"The bricks and mortar are one thing, but what I'm really excited about is the people," Yates said. "The providers, the nurses, the associates that will bring together the investment with the bricks-and mortar."
More than 30 associates will relocate to the new building and Yates anticipates adding more than 50 new jobs.
The second floor of the new building will house primary care physicians and specialists and physical therapy services.
OhioHealth has maintained a presence in Ashland County for more than 30 years. The new Ashland Health Center sits across Ohio 250 from Amberwood Parkway, which is where OhioHealth currently has physician practices for primary care, orthopedic and heart and vascular services.
OhioHealth is also the preferred healthcare partner for Ashland University Athletics.
Additionally, OhioHealth partnered with Mount Carmel Health System in late 2019 to open Central Ohio Medical Textiles (COMTEX). The $20 million facility, which employs more 100, provides laundry services for hospitals across Ohio.
Construction of the Ashland Health Center began in fall 2019 with a ground-breaking ceremony. The early intention was to open the facility by early November 2020, but the COVID-19 pandemic postponed the grand opening by a few months.
"As the world shut down, capital expenditures stopped. We continued to pay everybody, even if they weren't working. We're quite proud of what we were able to accomplish through that whole period of time," Yates said.