Wishard Breaks Ground on New West Side Health Center
Eskenasi Hospitals opens in about a year near Lafayette Square
Dignitaries line up to break ground on new west side health center. (wibc.com photo by Ray Steele)
About a year from now, those who have trouble paying for health care will have a new place to go thanks to a massive gift from a real estate developer.
Listen to Ray Steele's interview with HHC's Matt Gutwein:
Wishard broke ground Wednesday on a primary care facility in the Lafayette Square area that's scheduled to be completed in December of 2013, around the same time as the new Eskenazi Hospital. Almost half the new center will be the re-built former Circuit City building, with the rest being built from the ground up.
Matt Gutwein is the CEO of Wishard's parent company, Health and Hospital Corporation of Marion County. He says the primary care center will be full-service, with room for doctors, specialists, dentists and a pharmacy. Gutwein says the new center will help the community by "Giving a shot in the arm economically to this area where so many wonderful things are happening." Putting good people to work in jobs that can contribute to their family. That's the kind of power philanthropy can have." The center and the hospital are being built near LaFayette Square because Gutwein says their research showed a large number of patients from that area were showing up at Wishard's current hospital downtown.
The new hospital carries the Eskenazi name because of a $40 million gift from husband and wife real estate developers Sidney and Lois Eskenazi. Gutwein says it is the largest gift from a private family to a public hospital in the nation's history.