Baptist Health has announced plans to begin building a new medical campus on its 32-acre property on U.S. 17 and Village Square Parkway in Fleming Island.
The new facility is designed to provide convenience for the growing areas of Clay County, including Fleming Island, Orange Park, Green Cove Springs and Middleburg, Baptist officials said.
The centrally located campus in Clay County will feature an emergency center serving children and adults that includes a diagnostic imaging center and on-site lab services, totaling nearly 26,000-square-feet.
It will be great for those like Lindsay Smith, who recently took her 5-year-old daughter Madison to a doctor's office for a quick checkup. Had it been something serious, Smith said she would have had to drive 40 minutes to get to Baptist Medical Center downtown.
She likes the idea of soon having an emergency room in her backyard, less than a half-mile from her house.
"To be able to just drive across the street and say, 'Here's my sick kid. Please fix them,' to a mother, nothing is better than that," Smith said.
Imaging tests that will be offered at the emergency center include X-ray, MRI, CT, digital mammography, ultrasound and fluoroscopy to serve emergency patients, as well as those referred from physician offices. Emergency services will be provided by board-certified emergency medicine physicians, nurses and other clinicians.
Next to the emergency center will be an 80,000-square-foot medical office building. On the first floor of the three-story building, plans call for a 30,000-square-foot Wolfson Children's Specialty Center providing multi-specialty pediatric care by Wolfson Children's Hospital and its partners, Nemours Children's Clinic and the University of Florida-Jacksonville. In the convenient outpatient setting, children will be able to receive subspecialty care in pediatric cardiology, orthopaedics, neurology, children's rehabilitation and other services.
The second and third floors, each 20,000-square-feet, will be dedicated to adult physician offices.
Baptist said that currently, more than 25 percent of its patients who go to Wolfson Children's Hospital in Jacksonville are from Clay County.
The new children's facility will be able to meet all the same needs for its pediatric patients.
"We'll have a pediatric practice in there as well as rehab," said John Wilbanks, chief operating officer for Baptist Health. "It will be a hub for pediatric care."
Baptist said that's how this facility will differentiate itself from Orange Park Medical Center and St. Vincent's Medical Center in Clay County, which is expected to start construction this spring.
Parents say they like having options.
"If they put something right here, kids can go right from the elementary school to the doctor in five minutes, so that will be really good," Smith said.
The new $39 million Baptist Clay medical campus, which is expected to open in spring 2013, will bring up to 60 new jobs to the area, particularly for nurses, paramedics and other clinical professionals.
"Baptist Health purchased this property in 2006 and began to explore how we could develop it to best serve the people who live and work in this community," Wilbanks said. "We are excited about strengthening our presence in Clay County, providing greater access to comprehensive care for every stage of life."
"Building this new medical campus will help make it even more convenient for our Clay County neighbors who want the specialized care Baptist Health, Wolfson Children's Hospital and our physician partners provide," Wilbanks added.