Amsterdam, NY (May 24, 2021) - In the latest advancement in access to patient care for the community, St. Mary’s Healthcare is nearing the completion of the Rao Expansion on Route 30 in Amsterdam which broke ground in October of 2020. This is St. Mary’s largest build since the Rao Outpatient Pavilion itself in 2015. The new expansion adds an additional 17,000 square feet to an already existing 40,000 square foot building.
The facility set to open next month on June 14, houses the new St. Mary’s Amsterdam Family Health Center, which combines the care teams from St. Mary’s Carondelet Health Center, Memorial Health Center and the Memorial Pediatric Health Center in one central location. The site will provide much easier access for patients to receive the care they need, when they need it, and access to supportive services when it’s most convenient.
The new health center, encompassing most of the expanded space connected to the existing Rao Outpatient Pavilion, allows for a medical village approach to care not yet seen in the Fulton/Montgomery County Region. The new facility improves access, not only for primary and pediatrics, but also nutrition, behavioral health and follow-up services. By combining these existing services in one location with access to 30 exam rooms, St. Mary’s will easily be able to integrate collaborative care counselors. These counselors work in tandem with our primary care providers, psychiatrists and addiction professionals to deliver comprehensive medical and behavioral health services.
“When patients can easily access the care, they need from a single source (rather than piecemealing it amongst many service providers and locations) the patients care model stays more focused, and they see better health outcomes. That’s the medical village model we’re delivering to the community within this new St. Mary’s Amsterdam Family Health Center,” stated Scott Bruce, St. Mary’s President and CEO.
If a St. Mary's Amsterdam Family Health Center patient needs follow-up medical imaging, lab, behavioral health or nutrition services, there’s no need to leave the building and in most cases can be seen the same day, with little to no wait, upon referral. Access to St. Mary’s associates and providers being ready to help assist those patients in the new space and the existing Rao Outpatient Pavilion, helps to eliminate barriers to care that most patients experience to some level. This includes anything from transportation concerns with travel to the multiple follow-up appointments, to juggling childcare, to simply the regular hassle of going to multiple locations on different dates and times to get the care a patient needs. St. Mary’s is excited to bring this much needed approach to the Amsterdam and surrounding communities.
Mike Reynolds, St. Mary’s Director of Business Operations added, “we will truly be able to support our patients better than ever in this new space, our goal is for any patient to leave the building and be able to go straight home with everything needed to continue their path to healthy living in a manner consistent with our mission.”
Another key feature at this site, available later this year, is a retail community pharmacy. This new service again allows St. Mary’s patients greater access to care and services. A patient will be able to visit with their provider and if necessary, walk directly to the retail pharmacy, just feet away, to have their medication waiting for them after checking out. The building will also feature a drive-thru pharmacy window for easy and convenient access to the St. Mary’s Pharmacy for the entire community
Another exciting feature is the healing garden which will be positioned between the new addition and the existing building. This healing garden “green space” provides a place of refuge and promotes healing in patients, families, and associates. Having a variety of services including urgent care, the Tesiero Cancer Medicine Center, primary and pediatric care, this healing space will be a much-welcomed addition. It’s been proven that a calm, relaxing space including benches, beautiful flowers and landscaping, and sculptures, helps with the stress and recovery process that patients face. That is an important and unique feature added to our newest construction project.
“We are very excited to begin seeing patients in the new space and having them experience the convenience of a “one stop shop” for their healthcare needs. The collaboration and communication this space will allow for is absolutely something that our patients will see the difference in,” stated Heather Lopez, St. Mary’s Director of Primary Care.