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Published February 20, 2013, 11:30 PM

$13M Sanford Health Moorhead clinic construction running ahead of schedule

MOORHEAD – Construction of the new, $13 million Sanford Health clinic on the east edge of town is running ahead of schedule and could open in spring 2014.

By: Patrick Springer, INFORUM

MOORHEAD – Construction of the new, $13 million Sanford Health clinic on the east edge of town is running ahead of schedule and could open in spring 2014.

Business leaders were given an update Wednesday on the new clinic starting to take shape at 4000 28th Ave. S. It will be triple the size of Sanford’s current clinic in Moorhead.

Once open, the clinic will house more than 30 physicians or other clinicians, and offer a wide range of primary care services and occupational health, laboratory and pharmacy.

New services not now offered in Moorhead will include obstetrics and gynecology, and occupational health services. The 49,000-square-foot clinic will have 53 exam rooms, with room to add 13 more.

“I think it’s a huge opportunity for Moorhead,” said Les Stenerson, president of Stenerson Lumber Co. and one of the business leaders briefed Wednesday.

The expanded clinic will mean residents of Moorhead and surrounding communities from as far away as Alexandria will not have to travel across the Red River to Fargo for their primary care, Sanford Health executives said.

In its first full year of operation, the clinic is projected to handle 70,000 to 79,000 patient visits, said Jeff Hoss, a Sanford Clinic executive vice president.

The clinic, near the interchange of Interstate 94 and 34th Street, also will serve an area of new housing subdivisions and commercial growth, he said.

“We really see this as responding to the growth in Moorhead,” Hoss said.

The new clinic and its offering of services resulted from input from Moorhead patients, as well as community discussions, said Dr. Stephen Nelson, a Sanford Clinic senior vice president.

“We wanted to bring services to the population of Clay County and Moorhead,” he said, adding that the clinic was designed to blend well with nearby residential and commercial areas.

“It’s very, very important to us to offer a full menu, if you will, of clinical services,” he added.

In addition to primary care services, including internal medicine, pediatrics and family medicine, the clinic will have behavioral health, laboratory and X-ray services, digital mammography, osteoporosis scans and a pharmacy.

The new clinic will serve as a regional health center that will bring people to Moorhead and keep Moorhead residents in town for many of their health services, said Stenerson, who is president of the Moorhead Business Leaders Association.

“We feel it’s a huge boon for Moorhead,” he said.

The building should be enclosed this summer, and a pre-assembled tower will be put into place. Pre-assembled components help to shorten the time of construction, Hoss said.

Techniques used in building the new Moorhead clinic will be applied to other Sanford buildings, he said.

Sanford hasn’t yet decided what to do with its current Moorhead clinic at 1301 8th St. S. One possibility is to house behavioral health services there, Hoss said. A decision is expected in the coming months.

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Readers can reach Forum reporter Patrick Springer at (701) 241-5522