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Mt. Washington Pediatric undergoing $3.5M expansion and renovation

Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital hopes a three-story, 6,300-square-foot addition will mean families will wait a few weeks, rather than months, for appointments.

The hospital will move and expand its behavioral health program and the program for children who have severe feeding issues. This will free up 2,500 square feet in the existing building, which it will renovate and use for weight loss, rehabilitation and other clinical programs.

Mt. Washington Pediatric is spending about $3.5 million on the addition and renovations to the main building. Construction on the expansion gets underway this month and will take about a year to complete. Mt. Washington plans to hire as many as 12 over the next two years as it expands. 

The addition and renovation is distinct from its recent $9 million renovation, which included three completed projects: a new neonatal care unit, a new canopy for ambulances, and an upgraded lobby. Those three projects were financed through fundraising.

The construction and renovation is part of a long-term strategic plan for the 25-year-old building on Rogers Avenue in North Baltimore. The ten-year plan includes expanding some of the hospital’s key programs, including behavioral and mental health, feeding, rehabilitation, childhood obesity and sleep studies.

Mt. Washington Pediatric’s Feeding Day Program provides intensive help for children who have difficulty eating. The expansion will allow it to serve 12 infants instead of eight.

The second program to expand, the Behavioral Health Program, assesses and assists children with learning disabilities and mental health challenges. It also has a lengthy waitlist.

“You can imagine as a parent if you call to get an appointment to meet with one of our specialists to find out about strategies for parenting and behavior management, and being told you have to wait three or four months. That’s pretty stressful,” says Mt. Washington CEO Sheldon Stein.

Stein emphasizes that in this era of financial uncertainty in the healthcare industry, the hospital is proceeding very cautiously with the expansion. The $3.5 million is being financed through the hospital’s normal capital budget process, spread out over two years.

Mt. Washington is nestled in a residential community. The hospital met with about a half dozen nearby homeowners, who all gave their approval of the project.
 
Writer: Amy Landsman
Source: Sheldon Stein, CEO, Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital
 

Mt. Washington Pediatric Unveils $9M Renovation

Patients and visitors heading into the Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital on Rogers Avenue in North Baltimore now no longer face an outdated and nondescript main entrance.

A bright, renovated space now welcomes the nearly 6,500 patients, plus families, and caregivers who pass through the lobby each year.

“It’s bright. It’s colorful. You definitely know you’re in a place for children,” says Sheldon Stein, CEO of Mt. Washington.

The renovated lobby is one of three major upgrades completed Nov. 1. The $9 million renovation started two years ago.

The second update is a new canopy for ambulances, so premature babies being transported from local hospitals aren’t exposed to the hot sun or cold rain.

The third upgrade is a complete redesign and expansion of the hospital’s neonatal care unit, which added 10 more beds and allows it to take 100 to 150 more patient admissions each year. 

The design features a lot of high-tech touches: “Each bed has its own personal computer to document everything electronically,” says Stein. But there are also those tried and true low-tech features to help prevent germs. “You can’t go eight feet without walking into a sink to wash your hands,” Stein adds.

The renovations were part of a capital campaign that had its roots back in 2007, when Mt. Washington was jointly acquired by the University of Maryland Medical Center and Johns Hopkins Medicine. The board and leadership studied trends and realized there would be a growing need for babies who were ready to leave the pediatric ICU’s at local hospitals, but weren’t ready to go home.  Before construction began, staff and families were surveyed to see what they liked about the existing neonatal unit and what they wanted in the future.

The fundraising was financed through grants, corporate donations, and individual contributions. About $7 million paid for the capital improvements. The remaining $2 million is designated for the Mt. Washington Foundation, for programs and services.

The hospital has been adding nurses, social workers, case managers and physicians, and plans to continue hiring. The hospital has hired 20 additional clinical staff to accommodate the expansion. It employs 600 total.

“We have babies who are very tiny. They’re small but they come with a lot of technology. They have breathing apparatus, all sorts of pumps and IV’s,” says Stein. “We were very innovative in how we laid out this design that satisfied the families’ need to see a nurse close by, and the nurses’ needs to see another nurse.”

Writer: Amy Landsman
Source: Shelter Stein, CEO, Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital

$16M Assisted Living Complex Breaks Ground in Severna Park

A 140-apartment assisted and independent living facility broke ground last month in Severna Park and the developer of the 140,000-square-foot building plans to open it October of next year.
 
Brightview Senior Living at 473 Jumpers Hold Rd. is a $16 million project developed by the Shelter Group, which owns and operates Brightview housing. The company operates nine additional facilities in Maryland.
 
The apartments will be evenly divided between assisted living and independent living housing, and will include 26 units devoted to memory care, says Shelter Senior Development Director Andrew Teeters.
 
Teeters says there's an incredible need for senior communities in Severna Park as there are no new senior living communities in the area. With an aging population, the company plans to target people over 75 who have raised families in the community and want to live locally.
 
Some of the features of the facility include a fitness center, a cafe and pub with regular happy hours, a computer center and library with activity rooms. Additional staff such as nurses will be on site to support residents.
 
Brightview provides market-rate senior housing, and rates in their facilities average approximately $2,500 per month.
 
Source: Andrew Teeters, senior development director for The Shelter Group
Writer: Alexandra Wilding, alexandra@bmoremedia.com
 


Towson University Plotting $6M Move of Wellness Center

Towson University is bringing four of its disparate community health and wellness groups into the new Towson City Center building whose anchor tenant moved in this month.
 
The four centers will take up nearly 47,000 square feet when the university completes its move this week. The Institute for Well-Being is composed of the Center for Adults with Autism; the Occupational Therapy Center; the Speech, Language and Hearing Center; and, the Wellness Center. The university is spending $6 million on the relocation to downtown Towson. 
 
The university’s radio station WTMD will also move to the new office builiding, making the university one of the largest tenants of the $27 million Towson City Center. Other tenants will include the Bagby Restaurant Group’s farm-to-table restaurant Cunningham’s; anchor tenant MileOne Automotive, which opened doors at the new space Aug. 2; BusinessSuites; and, WMS Partners.
 
“We’re taking programs that are currently spread out and placing them all together under one roof,” Director of the Institute for Well-Being Sharon Glennen says. “This will allow us to expand.”
 
The Center for Adults with Autism provides art, music and rock climbing classes to hundreds of autistic clients. The new space will include a 1,500-square-foot model apartment that can be used to prepare autistic adults for independent living.
 
The Wellness Center, which serves about 325 clients in the community, has a blood lab, a metabolic cart and a Nexus scanner. The roughly 10,000-square-foot new space has a better layout with the exercise studio connected to the other rooms so that staff can better monitor the clients. There are currently six staff members, but more may be added within six to 12 months, Wellness Center Director Scott Fidler says.
 
The Speech, Hearing and Language Center is the largest of the four organizations, serving more than 1,000. The new space includes two new hearing testing sound booths to make a total of four. There will be two classrooms for fall and spring programs provided to students with disabilities, allowing more attendees than before when the programs were offered at various locations around the community.
 
The Occupational Therapy will include services for the Stroke Survivor’s Education and Support Group, with a model bathroom and kitchen to retrain stroke survivors in daily living.

Writer: Jolene Carr, 
Source: Sharon Glennen, Towson University 

Hunt Valley Consulting Firm Expanding Office, Hiring

Consulting services firm Armada has relocated to a larger headquarters in Hunt Valley is looking to add as much as 10,000 square feet of space to accommodate its growing workforce.

The company, which offers healthcare, employer services and insurance consulting firm, moved last month from Timonium to a 12,000-square-foot corporate headquarters in Hunt Valley from an 8,000-square-foot location in Timonium.

In the past 18 months, the company's staff has increased by 45 percent, and the company plans to hire an additional six to eight employees this year, says Armada Co-founder, Keith Sullivan. It currently employs 48 and will hire a director of communications, an underwriting manager and administration staff. 

Armada also secured options on an additional 8,000 to 10,000 square-foot space adjacent to its new headquarters which could accommodate a doubling of its current workforce of just under 50 employees, Sullivan says. 

Sullivan says his goal is to continue to grow the business steadily and to provide consistent quality to clients. 

"My goal is to develop all of our businesses with the understanding that we'll need to fortify our business with really great people as we do that," Sullivan says. 

The new space consolidates the company to one central area which will help with collaboration across all parts of the company, Sullivan says. At the old spot, the company was spread among different floors. 
 
The company has two operating divisions. One division provides business consulting and services on topics such as human resources, benefits, and managed payroll for mid-market companies, mostly in the mid-Atlantic. The other division creates and distributes insurance programs nationally.

Additionally, the company expanded and upgraded their technology including a studio to produce in-house training and communication videos for clients. 

The new construction by Merritt Properties at 230 Shilling Circle in Hunt Valley is a certified LEED Platinum building. 
  
Source: Keith Sullivan, co-founder of Armada.
Writer: Alexandra Wilding, alexandra@bmoremedia.com
 

Maryland VA Hospitals Plan Major Expansion

Seeking to address an increased demand for health care services, the Veterans Affairs (VA) Maryland Health Care System plans to spend $41 million on construction and renovation projects at several facilities in the Baltimore area this summer.
 
The project includes a renovation to the atrium of the system’s downtown location and construction of a linear accelerator for cancer treatment. Linear accelerators generate high-energy electrons and X-rays. A new rehabilitation and robotics center and an extensive addition to an existing building are planned at the system’s location off Loch Raven Road in Baltimore. 
 
The upgrades are part of a statewide renovation project for the health care system that includes three inpatient facilities and six outpatient clinics throughout the state.
 
The system offers medical, surgical, rehabilitative, mental health, and outpatient care to more than 52,000 veterans annually in Maryland.
 
The construction projects will also add new clinical programs to benefit Veteran patients and increase clinical and administrative space, says chief of public and community relations at the VA Maryland Healthcare System, R. David Edwards. 
 
At the Baltimore VA Medical Center at 10 N. Greene St., construction and renovations are planned to improve patient access and expand clinical programs. The new space will be used by 400 patients each week, officials say. 

 Construction is ongoing on the linear accelerator suite that will be central to the center's new radiation oncology program. Officials expect construction to be completed by next summer.
 
Additional administrative and clinical space at the center will be created through a 20,000 square-foot addition to the center's front atrium and a 20,000 square-foot renovation to existing space. A robotics space and a modern media center will be added and is projected to be completed by early fall.
 
Construction is underway at the Loch Raven VA Outpatient Clinic in north Baltimore which is the site for a new,15,000-square-foot rehabilitation research center. Designed to better serve Maryland veterans who are stroke survivors or in need of physical rehabilitation, the $8.1 million center will include specialized equipment and gym spaces.
 
At the Loch Raven VA Community Living and Rehabilitation Center, a 23,000 square-foot addition to the facility currently underway will add multi-purpose rooms and expand hospice and therapy areas.
 
A rise in military enrollments following the 9/11 attacks and conflicts in the Middle East has precipitated a rise in demand for post-service health care services. The VA is also responding to the increasing numbers of women veterans now coming into the system, officials say. 
 
A recent report from the Associated Press says 45 percent of American's newest veterans, those from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, file for disability benefits for injuries they say are service-related.
 
 
Source: R. David Edwards, chief of Public and Community Relations at the VA Maryland Health Care System, Veterans Affairs Maryland Health Care System. 

Writer: Alexandra Wilding, alexandra@bmoremedia.com


Walgreens Has Big Expansion Plans For Maryland

Pharmacy chain Walgreens is moving into Maryland in a big way. Within the next 12 months, the chain plans to open a dozen stores in Baltimore City and Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Frederick, Montgomery, Prince Georges and Washington counties. First on the list of openings is a new Walgreens that opens in Pikesville, in Baltimore County, April 7.
 
Maryland currently has 60 Walgreens, but store officials say the state is considered one with the least penetration. The number of stores in Maryland is growing as the pace of Walgreens’ expansion across the country has slowed, according to Andrew Militello, Walgreens district manager, who declined to release financial information for the chain or for individual stores.
 
Sites for the upcoming stores are Baltimore City near Johns Hopkins University campus, Cockeysville, Federal Hill, Hyattsville, Laurel, Perry Hall, Odenton, Rockville and two in Hagerstown. Existing Walgreens are located throughout the state, in Baltimore City and County, Carroll County, Howard County and the Maryland suburbs around Washington, D.C.
 
The Pikesville Walgreens is located at 1510 Reisterstown Rd., at the intersection of Reisterstown and Old Court roads, in northwest Baltimore County. This is the second Walgreens in Pikesville, the first being in Quarry Lake, a community in the Smith-Greenspring area of northwest Baltimore County.
 
While the “soft” opening is April 7, the grand opening will be held April 19, with free giveaways and children’s events.
 
The Pikesville Walgreens brought 23 new jobs to the area, and more employees may be hired in the future, Militello says.
 
The store is 15,000 square feet in size, slightly larger than a typical Walgreens. Formerly the home of an office supply store, the building’s interior was renovated and the exterior façade redone in keeping with Walgreens’ brand. Because of its size, the Pikesville Walgreens will carry items that other stores don’t have the space for.
 
The Pikesville Walgreens was five years in the making as the company scouted for a location and did market surveys of potential customers. Militello says the survey showed the location to be ideal for a number of reasons. The store has a large parking lot and is near the Baltimore Beltway (I-695), and the area has a sizeable senior population. Two multi-unit Harry and Jeanette Weinberg buildings for senior citizens are close by the store.
 
“This is a tremendous site for us,” says Militello. “It’s a prime spot in Pikesville and easy access from surrounding neighborhoods.”
 
Source: Andrew Militello, Walgreens’ district manager
Writer: Barbara Pash

Wellness Shop and Yoga Studio Flexing its Way to Downtown

 Roane’s Earth Wellness  -- a one-stop shop for herbs, vitamins, supplements and yoga studio -- is coming to downtown Baltimore.

The official opening is Saturday May 5 at 333 North Charles Street, in the Women’s Industrial Exchange Building.
 
Owner NeAnna Roane McLean is a fourth generation herbalist, having learned the field from her father. When he retired, McLean says she “inherited” his clients. “People kept calling me at all hours about their migraines and other health concerns,” she says.
 
McLean advertises the shop as providing “wellness experiences.” In keeping with that mission, she will offer consultations on holistic nutrition.
 
All products in the shop are organic. Vitamins and supplements are vegan-certified. Cosmetics have no parabens or sulfates and have not been tested on animals. Candles, spices and household cleaners are also offered.
 
McLean is a certified yoga instructor who is chair of the yoga program for the Owings Mills Recreation and Parks Council. She specializes in restorative yoga, and expects to hire additional yoga instructors depending on the type of yoga they teach and class demand. Besides yoga, the shop may have somatic therapy-pain management and reflexology.
 
McLean is hiring people to work in the shop area. She declined to provide financial information.
 
Source: NeAnna Roane McLean, owner of Roane’s Earth Wellness
Writer: Barbara Pash

Nebraska Healthcare Company to Open Columbia Office

A healthcare management company with extensive state and federal government contracts will open an office in Columbia next month.
 
Headquartered in Omaha, StrategicHealthSolutions LLC plans to expand its real estate footprint to include a 8,800-square-foot space in Columbia Corporate Park. The company will invest $125,000 in its expansion, CEO Peg Stessman says.
 
The company plans to grow from its six employees in Maryland to fill the office space that can accommodate as many as 50 workers, Stessman says.
 
The skill-set of area workers drew the company to the region, as many prospective employees are familiar with running government programs.
 
Compared to a location like Omaha, where government contracts are less common, Stessman says she will have a choice of "thousands" of potential employees compared with a "handful."
 
"Omaha isn't known as a government contract mecca," Stessman says.
 
The company's headquarters will remain in Omaha.
 
The company specializes in healthcare management, including education and training, medical review, monitoring and compliance and auditing, particularly with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.
 
The small business has steadily expanded over the past six and currently has 101 employees.

Stessman says she plans to divide her time evenly between Columbia and Omaha. After working out of hotel rooms and coffee shops for several years, she says she can't wait for an office. 

Source: Peg Stessman, says president and CEO of StrategicHealthSolutions.
Writer: Alexandra Wilding, alexandra@bmoremedia.com

Carroll Hospital Center to Break Ground Next Year on Cancer Center

Plans are moving forward on a new $27 million cancer hospital at the Carroll Hospital Center that officials say will better serve patients in the area.

The hospital plans to break ground on the project in early 2013 and open in 2014. The hospital is currently seeking donations for the center and plans to finance the center with cash and ongoing donations, says Sharon Sanders, assistant vice president for service line management for Carroll Hospital Center.

Last year, the hospital took over the operations of a neighboring care unit in preparation for its growth in cancer care. 
 
The Westminster hospital plans to expand an existing building into a 42,500-square-foot facility that will serve cancer patients seeking treatments and rehabilitation all under one roof, Sanders says. 
 
The expansion will provide services to area residents that have to travel, sometimes daily, to downtown Baltimore for treatment.
 
The combination of a rise of cancer rates as well improvements in treatment has lead to an increase in population of patients needing medical care. To support the increase, the hospital must expand and improve, Sanders says.
  
Some of the planned additions to the center include the addition of eight new chemotherapy chairs and a second machine for radiation. The hospital wants provide wellness and disease management programs, and classroom spaces for educational programming.
 
Carroll Hospital Center acquired their current cancer center in July 2011 from US Oncology.
 
Source: Sharon Sanders, assistant vice president for service line management for Carroll Hospital Center.
Writer: Alexandra Wilding
 

Construction Begins on $9.5M Nursing Home in Havre de Grace

Construction crews broke ground this month on the first phase of a new 39,000-square-foot nursing home at the Bulle Rock development in Havre de Grace.
 
Lorien Health Systems' $9.5 million building will have 78 beds and will eventually include an assisted-living facility. The company expects to open the building for patients in April 2013.
 
The site's location provides a needed resource in an area that is getting more people, says James A. Forsyth, an attorney for Lorien Health Systems.
 
Harford County has gained thousands of new residents thanks to the Pentagon's Base Realignment and Closure and these new residents will likely need services for their aging families, Forsyth says.

Lorien's model of healthcare combines skilled nursing facilities with assisted living under the same roof so that patients can move between facilities if necessary. Individuals with more medically complex cases, from accidents for example, will also be able to receive care at this facility, Forsyth says.
 
Lorien's additional sites are located in Bel Air, Belcamp, Columbia, Ellicott City, Mt. Airy, Taneytown, Timonium, and a 64-bed facility nearing completion in Elkridge.
 
Any new healthcare facility of a certain threshold requires a certificate of need approval which is a permitting process overseen by the Maryland Health Care Commission. The process uses county-by-county demographics to determine how many beds will be needed to serve the elderly population.
 
 
Writer: Alexandra Wilding
Source: James A. Forsyth, council for Lorien Health Systems
 

Wellness Center Opens in Columbia

A teacher at Tai Sophia Institute has opened her own wellness center in Columbia.

Jade Connelly-Duggan this month opened WisdomWell LLC, which offers acupuncture, massage, herbal treatments, yoga and nutrition counseling at 8955 Guilford Rd., just south of Broken Land Parkway.

The daughter of Tai Sophia founders Bob Duggan and Dianne Connelly, the business owner spent $30,000 to open the 4,700 square foot office. The space includes nine treatment rooms and a yoga studio.

Owned by Liberty Property Trust, the building faces a koi pond and extensive landscaping. Close to Routes 29 and 32, it’s also easy to get to, Connelly-Duggan says. The site is also near the Mall in Columbia and King’s Contrivance Village Center.

Writer: Julekha Dash
Source: Jade Connelly-Duggan

Advanced Radiology, American, Merge in $40M Deal

The parent company of Advanced Radiology has acquired its major competitor for $40 million, creating one of the largest imaging service providers in the region.
 
RadNet Inc has acquired the majority of US imaging centers operated by CML Healthcare, including CML's subsidiaries American Radiology and the Imaging Institute.
 
“Our hope is that it is good news for the Baltimore market in that RadNet can bring its operating expertise to the area with these centers and improve what they're doing for the future.” says RadNet Executive Vice President Steve Forthuber.
 
RadNet operates 233 radiology centers in Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island and California. The acquisition of American Radiology adds 2,000 employees and 61 radiology and imaging centers to RadNet's portfolio in the area.
 
"We're hard at work understanding all aspects of the (American) operation in Maryland so that we can make sure that we're providing high quality services, ” Forthuber says. “We plan on operating all of the centers with the objective of enhancing operations.”
 
RadNet says it intends to keep all of its Baltimore area centers open and maintain the same radiologists and staffers at all of the newly acquired American Radiology centers. The company may cut corporate positions where there is overlap.
 
Source: Steve Forthuber, RadNet
Writer: Amy McNeal


Medical Clinic Eyes Anne Arundel, Baltimore Counties

A growing neighborhood medical center is opening its third Anne Arundel County location.

Patient First will open a walk-in clinic in Odenton next year at 405 Gateway Blvd., its 14th center in Maryland.

The Glen Allen, Va., company also opened a medical facility in Catonsville this month. The 6,350-square-foot office has 12 examination rooms, emergency care, X-ray machines and an on-site lab.

“We talked to a lot of people in the area and a lot of them have gone to our Owing Mills or Glen Burnie location,” says Patient First spokesman David Clark.

Patient First operates 37 medical centers in Maryland, Virginia and Pennsylvania. The Maryland facilities include locations in Aberdeen, Bel Air, Perry Hall, White Marsh, Baltimore, Lutherville, Owings Mills, Columbia, Catonsville, Glen Burnie and Pasadena.

Writer:Julekha Dash
Source: David Clark, Patient First

Johns Hopkins Hospital's Six-Year, $1 Billion Expansion to Open in April

After six years of construction, Johns Hopkins Hospital's massive $1 billion-plus expansion will be completed in November and open its doors in April.

Hiring has begun hiring for the nearly 700 workers, largely nurses and other clinicians, needed to staff the new hospital, says Ted Chambers, administrator for the Johns Hopkins Children’s Center.

The 1.6 million-square-foot hospital will include two connected 12-story towers: one for cardiovascular and critical care and the other to house a children’s hospital.

The expanded hospital will include more lounge and support areas for families.

“It’s a huge change for us and gives us the ability to serve families in a way we’ve never done before,” Chambers says. “The buildings will be a lot quieter and restful.”

Funding for the twin towers comes primarily from New York Mayor and Johns Hopkins University alum Michael Bloomberg and Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.

The new complex will include 560 patient beds—355 for adults and 205 for children.

Other features include:
• 224 adult acute care rooms;
• 96 adult intensive care rooms;
• 35 obstetrics rooms;
• 120 pediatric acute care rooms; and,
• 85 pediatric intensive care rooms.


Writer: Julekha Dash
Source: Ted Chambers, Johns Hopkins Hospital
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