George Hiotis

Genesis Announces Plans For $125 Million Facility

by George Hiotis on October 28, 2011 at 1:54 am

Genesis HealthCare System unveiled plans to launch a $125 million facilities enhancement program Friday as part of its ongoing community commitment to provide the highest quality care at the lowest cost.

The new medical center will be built on the grounds of Bethesda Hospital in Zanesville. The design process will be complete in late 2012, and construction will begin at that time. The new medical center is scheduled to open in early 2015.

Initial plans call for a new patient care tower attached to a completely renovated Bethesda Hospital building to create a single state-of-the-art medical center. A new outpatient cancer center and medical office building will also be built on the campus.

“We have made great strides to re-create Genesis for our community over the last few years. We have recruited 88 new physicians so more people can see a doctor when they need to, improved the quality and scope of our services, increased patient satisfaction, initiated a community-wide electronic medical record system, and achieved significant operational savings,” said Matthew Perry, president and chief executive officer of Genesis.

Now Genesis turns its focus to facilities. The new addition will include an emergency/trauma department, intensive care unit, heart center, operating rooms and inpatient rooms. With the new addition and total renovation of the existing Bethesda building, the new facility will include 260 all-private patient rooms.

 The expanded medical center will include Centers of Excellence for heart & vascular, cancer, orthopedics, women’s health, neuroscience, and trauma/emergency.

“The time has come for Genesis to take our next big step and build a state-of-the-art medical center to deliver expanded services using the best technology for the residents of our community,” Perry said. “This $125 million facility project will enhance the medical technology and services available right here in our community. The economic impact throughout the community during construction will be $250 million to $310 million.”

“Genesis is a regional referral center for a six-county area,” Perry said. “Currently about 30 percent of the region’s residents travel outside of the area, primarily to Columbus, and spend about $175 million there for care. With the advancements we have made, we can provide the majority of this care now, and our new facilities will enable us to meet even more needs, making it easier and less costly for patients and their families – and adding economic benefit to our community.”

Perry said the new facilities will increase Genesis’ state-of-the-art service offerings, while also reducing the costs of maintaining aging and inefficient facilities. By reducing duplicate services between its two locations and renovating the Bethesda building, Perry projects Genesis will cut $10 million from the annual operating budget.

Genesis will finance the project through a combination of bonds and a $15 million capital campaign.

“With interest rates at historic lows and the immediate projected operational cost savings, now is the most opportune time to launch this program,” Perry said. “We have received a positive response from the capital markets and are confident the community will support its new medical center through a fundraising campaign.”

The Good Samaritan site will remain a thriving medical campus for many years. However, Genesis does not have a reuse for the existing hospital building, and the budget for the project includes money for it to be torn down.

“This is a very exciting time in our community,” Perry said. “We will provide regular updates on our website,, for the community to be able to follow each phase of the process and to provide suggestions and ask questions.”