QUINCY (WGEM) — Blessing Health System announced plans Wednesday to relocate its ambulatory surgery center that’s currently housed on Quincy Medical Group property.
Officials with Blessing Health System said this decision comes after QMG’s new surgery center was approved.
Blessing’s new facility will go where a parking lot currently exists on their 11th St. campus.
Officials from both healthcare providers said competition is good and can help the community.
“The community wanted improved access. They wanted competition. They wanted improved pricing and so now we will have clearly, two easy to identify sites with improved access, improved parking at both sites and improved pricing,” said Maureen Kahn, Blessing Health System President and CEO.
The move is in response to QMG’s plans to open a surgery center in the Quincy Mall, which Blessing fought.
“In order for us to compete, we need to have our surgery center in a building we own, so we can continue to provide safety net services that the community needs,” said Tim Koontz, | Blessing Corporate Services Board Chairman.
Blessing officials said the proposed $21 million, two-story center will house three larger operating rooms and three procedure rooms, but like the QMG center, it has to be approved by the same state board.
The plan still raises concern. Back in February, Blessing said QMG’s new facility would cost them $41 million annually and 400 jobs, but when asked about that Wednesday, Koontz said jobs would be risked if services were not expanded.
“I think when we talked about that, as this all plays out, you know, we do have a concern about keeping the safety net services in the community. So we run the risk of, if we don’t expand the pie of the services that stay in our community, we run the risk of it affecting jobs,” said Koontz.
Officials at QMG said the announcement wasn’t a surprise and they’re using this as a chance to expand services even more.
“We don’t have a lot of space here, so having almost an additional whole floor will be helpful for a lot of reasons. So we’re proud of the use of space that we’ve accomplished this far, but we’re also always grateful for more space and this will certainly allow for it,” said Carol Brockmiller, Quincy Medical Group CEO.
If the state review board approves Blessing’s plan later this year, officials said the relocated facility would be open in January of 2022.
QMG officials said they’d take over in 2023.
Since this plan also needs state approval, WGEM News asked QMG officials if they plan to contest the plan, they said they haven’t made a decision on that yet.