From our news partners The Reporter Herald
With $7.35 million raised from foundations, nonprofits and the community, Sunrise Community Health of Greeley is ready to remodel a former Hewlett-Packard Co. building into the Loveland Community Health Center.
Half of that amount -- $4.15 million -- came from foundations and nonprofits to leverage additional funds from Sunrise and the McKee Medical Center Foundation. The funds include a Banner Health a leadership grant of $2 million and the Colorado Health Foundation donation of $2 million. The Caring for Colorado Foundation donated another $150,000 for equipment at the clinic.
"To make this building functional requires a lot of renovations," said Mitzi Moran, president and chief executive officer of Sunrise.
Moran spoke Thursday during a press conference in a section of the building, 302 SE Third St., which was blocked off by blue drapes from the construction area.
Construction work is scheduled to begin next month to turn the 48,000-square-foot space into a low-cost medical clinic with room for the Stepping Stones Adult Day Program. Move-in is expected in the fall.
Sunrise Community Health, which purchased the building on a 6-acre site, generated money for the cost of renovations from several sources.
The $4.15 million in foundation gifts, combined with $1 million in private donations through the McKee Medical Center Foundation and $1 million from the Sunrise capital fund, bring the fundraising efforts near completion. Another $1.2 million was raised for Stepping Stones, bringing the total to the $7.35 million.
The total project cost, including the renovations, building purchase and equipment, among other costs, is $8.1 million.
"These ... large donations got us there," said Marilyn Schock, president and chief executive officer of McKee Medical Center. "This will be the support that puts our community on the map."
The facility initially will open in 25,000 square feet of the building and will include 24 medical exam rooms, two procedure rooms and nine dental chairs, along with a laboratory, X-ray area and pharmacy.
There will be space for additional clinicians to be hired for expanded medical and dental services, as well as behavioral health services, provided in collaboration with Touchstone Health Partners.
"Both clinics are full," Moran said. "Short of running 24-7 we cannot fit any more patients in those buildings."
In 2012, the Community Health Center served 7,000 patients, and 6,500 the year before, in the main clinic and at a second site at 1250 N. Wilson Ave., which opened in 2011 as Sunrise Touchstone Clinic in collaboration with Touchstone Health Partners.
Sunrise opened the Community Health Center in 1997 at 450 N. Cleveland Ave., where it has been since, but the 15,000-square-foot space is too small to meet the growing health and dental care needs of southern Larimer County residents.
Sunrise operates the center in partnership with McKee and the McKee Foundation, and Banner Health donates the space.
In 1995, the McKee Foundation began fundraising for a clinic to serve the under-insured and uninsured, raising $1.3 million by the time the health center opened, said Julie Johnson Haffner, executive director of the foundation.
"Quite frankly, they haven't stopped since," Johnson Haffner said. "They continue to be passionate about the difference this clinic has made."
The McKee Foundation set aside $1 million to move Stepping Stones from a 675-square-foot rented space at First Christian Church, 2000 N. Lincoln Ave., to the new building, likely in September, Johnson Haffner said.
The new space will include group meeting rooms, therapy rooms and a reception area for Stepping Stones, she said.
"This program can serve families who want to keep their loved ones at home but need a place during the day," she said. "We want ... to improve the patient experience."
Shelley Widhalm can be reached at 669-5050, ext. 531, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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