published Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

Erlanger trustees approve VW site developer


by Emily Bregel

ERLANGER'S NEW CAMPUS

Erlanger at Volkswagen Drive will offer:

* Primary care

* Occupational services

* Rehabilitative services

* Dental and eye care

* Fitness center

* Child care

* Life Force helipad

* Pharmacy

* Specialty care, like OB-GYN, as needed

Source: Erlanger Health System

Erlanger Health System has chosen a developer to start work on a 35,000-square-foot building that will house a medical center at the Volkswagen auto assembly plant near Ooltewah.

The $6.7 million center, which will serve thousands of Volkswagen employees and their families as well as the nearby residents, will offer primary care and rehabilitation services, as well as dental and eye care and other services, officials said.

Hospital trustees approved a resolution to contract with Birmingham, Ala.-based Johnson Development. After a competitive bid process, officials picked Johnson to finance and construct the center, Donna Bourdon, senior vice president of ambulatory services at Erlanger, said at the meeting.

Erlanger will agree to a 20-year lease with the developer and after that the health system will own the facility, President and CEO Jim Brexler said after the meeting.

Erlanger is also responsible for securing leases with third-party medical providers who will work out of the center, Brexler said.

The center, like the VW plant, will be at Enterprise South industrial park.

The project is on an "aggressive" schedule, Bourdon said. Primary care services should be available at the site by June, she said.

The facility also is well-positioned to expand to meet growing demand with other major businesses expected to locate at Enterprise South, Brexler said.

"This is sized for the community. ... We have property we can expand onto, should we need that," he said.

Also at the meeting, trustees approved a resolution to renew a contract with The Plastic Surgery Group to provide on-call coverage for emergency plastic surgery and hand surgery in the trauma center, at a cost of $803,000 for the year.

After the meting, trustees went into closed session. The session was scheduled for routine medical peer reviews, Brexler said.

Contact staff writer Emily Bregel at ebregel@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6467.

about Emily Bregel...

Health care reporter Emily Bregel has worked at the Chattanooga Times Free Press since July 2006. She previously covered banking and wrote for the Life section. Emily, a native of Baltimore, Md., earned a bachelor’s degree in American Studies from Columbia University. She received a first-place award for feature writing from the East Tennessee Society of Professional Journalists’ Golden Press Card Contest for a 2009 article about a boy with a congenital heart defect. She ...

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XMarine said...

A private business needs to furnish its own on site medical center.Years ago I worked at Combustion & they furnished their own medical center for 5000+ employees.Tax dollars do not belong to private business.Enough is enough with this VW deal.Where is the so called Tea Party...out to tea I suppose.

December 14, 2010 at 6:35 a.m.
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