Lakeshore Health Partners to open in Zeeland in fall

June 11, 2010
| By Pete Daly |
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ZEELAND — Holland Hospital’s Lakeshore Health Partners will soon have a building of its own, in Zeeland Township, and its name will be Lakeshore Health Partners.

The 32,000-square-foot, two-story building on the corner of West Parkway and 84th Avenue, right off I-196, will be open for patients Oct. 4 and staffed at the start with two primary care physicians, according to Mike Parker, director of support services and construction at Holland Hospital.

Lakeshore Health Partners is a wholly owned subsidiary of Holland Hospital, formed in January 2009 to provide patients in the region with specialists in a variety of medical fields, plus the latest technology and treatments.

Ground was broken on the $10.5 million medical building a little more than a year ago. Parker said the second floor of the facility has not been completely built out yet, allowing room for expansion of services.

“It is a multi-use facility,” said Parker, which will eventually include a variety of medical specialists.

When it opens, it will have lab and X-ray services in place, space for four family care physicians to practice, and a walk-in clinic where no appointment is required, open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

“The walk-in care model we are looking at will accommodate individuals who might have an urgent care need, but also a non-urgent care need,” said Tim Breed, a spokesperson for Holland Hospital. Breed explained that non-urgent needs could include people who simply need a sports or employment physical exam, someone seeking a flu shot or someone with a nagging pain or illness.

A walk-in clinic of that type will be “unique in this area,” according to Parker, “and we’re still working through a lot of issues in that.” The core business of the LHP facility will be the services of primary care physicians, he added.

“The model is unique for this area, and we’re being guided a bit by the primary care physicians who will be staffing that building,” added Breed.

The staff on opening day will be Dr. Joshua Everhart, Dr. Jason Myers and Lindsey Ray, a certified family nurse practitioner. Both Everhart and Myers specialize in family medicine and urgent care.

Breed said three separate surveys in recent years by Holland Hospital have indicated a shortage of primary care physicians in the area where the new facility is located, and that shortage became “the original driving force” that led to Holland Hospital’s investment in Zeeland Township.

In announcing the new facility a year ago, Holland Hospital president/CEO Dale Sowders said that in addition to the need for more primary care physicians, there was also a need seen for more after-hours medical care.

“The primary focus is well/preventive care, with after-hours access for minor illness and injury secondary, to maximize both patient convenience and cost-effective health care,” said Sowders. “Our goal is to strengthen the local health care delivery system for patients in Ottawa County by providing increased access to primary care.”

Sowders said data showed that more than 3,000 nearby residents sought after-hours or immediate care in 2008 from Holland Hospital’s Urgent Care facility located north of Holland. The new facility will benefit patients, employers and insurers by offering increased access to appropriate after-hours care at a location outside the acute care hospital setting where it’s more economical, efficient and an overall better use of health care resources.

The new LHP building is on one of three parcels of property in Ottawa County that Holland Hospital purchased in 2008.

As of now, 24 physicians are members of Lakeshore Health Partners, with two more expected to join this fall.

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