Aided by a $5 million Riedman Foundation gift, Rochester Regional Health is planning a $26 million ambulatory care center in Irondequoit.
The Riedman Health Center is planned to be developed in a 60,000-square-foot building formerly occupied by a Tops Friendly Markets LLC store in the Ridge Goodman Plaza on East Ridge Road.
RRH has applied to the state Department of Health for certificate of need approval to launch the ambulatory care project and is hoping for it to come through before the end of the year, said Hugh Thomas, RRH chief administration officer and general counsel.
The new center is planned to offer a wide range of nonsurgical services, including primary care, pediatrics, imaging services, occupational health, telehealth and dental care, said Eric Bieber M.D., RRH’s chief executive officer.
Some services or practices would be new additions, but many would be moved from Rochester General Hospital or adjacent buildings on the hospital’s nearby campus in the city, he said. RRH has yet to determine what the best use of space created on the hospital campus by the relocations might be.
The new ambulatory care center will be developed amid an ongoing shift of much of U.S. health care from inpatient to outpatient settings.
That shift is partly because of technological changes. Improved techniques allow procedures such as tonsillectomies and cataract surgery that used to require hospital stays to typically be done as outpatient procedures. To accommodate that trend, RRH expanded its ambulatory surgery options, opening a same-day surgery center at 360 Linden Oaks Drive in Pittsford.
Also driving the trend are payment reforms by government and private third-party payers meant to encourage providers to rely less on expensive hospitalizations.
Consolidating nonsurgical outpatient health services in one easily accessed location, the Riedman Health Center would provide a patient-friendly setting, Bieber said.
For patients driving to appointments and for relatives or care- givers dropping off or picking up patients, parking at the new center will be free. The plaza also sits near bus lines.
The design, layout and features incorporated in the new health center are planned to be in line with aims promoted by the state’s Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment program, Bieber said.
The state initiative is parceling out an $8 billion federal Medicaid waiver to help health care providers streamline care delivery with an eye toward improving care while containing costs.
RRH is expecting some DSRIP funding to help with the Riedman Health Center construction, which would involve gutting and remaking the supermarket building’s interior, Bieber said.
The Riedman foundation gift is the latest of several the family, headed by patriarch John Riedman, a longtime Rochester General Hospital and RRH board member, has made to RRH.
Riedman is the father of Rochester Business Journal president and publisher Susan Holliday.
Five years ago, a $2.5 million Riedman Foundation gift helped the health system acquire and renovate the former ESL Federal Credit Union headquarters complex, which sits kitty corner from the Ridge Goodman Plaza at the intersection of East Ridge Road and Kings Highway.
Rechristened the Riedman Campus, the 21-acre, 306,000-square-foot complex serves as an administrative hub for RRH, housing more than 1,000 workers including Bieber and other top administrators.
“For decades, my father has invested his time and talent in Rochester Regional Health and its predecessor organizations,” said Riedman Cos. president David Riedman, speaking on behalf of the family. “He is proud to continue that tradition. Rochester Regional Health System is vital to the health of our community and the foundation is honored to play a role in their ingenuity and continued expansion.”
Seeing the former Tops Markets building as an ideal location for an ambulatory center, RRH purchased Ridge Goodman Plaza this year, Bieber said.
At the 160,000-square-foot plaza, other still operating businesses include a Marshall’s department store and a Starbucks Coffee and Chipotle Grill. They will stay in place indefinitely with RRH serving as their landlord, Bieber said.
Tenants are on long-term leases with no expiration dates soon coming up, but RRH is not ruling out someday expanding its presence there, Bieber said. The health system is contemplating no definite moves along those lines, he added.
Also recently purchased by RRH in the immediate area is a 36,000-square-foot building at East Ridge Road and Portland Avenue that formerly served as an Everest Institute facility. Bieber said the health system plans to turn the structure into an educational facility for its staff.
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