“Site work will be the only activity taking place for the next little while. We will be bringing in soil and prepping the site for footings,” said Josh Rohatinsky, project manager, Spanish Fork Hospital.
(Intermountain Healthcare photo)
Expected to open in just more than two years, a 30-bed medical facility under construction in south Utah County will offer a variety of services to patients and visitors, along with a stunning view of the local landscape. Intermountain's Spanish Fork Hospital will sit on approximately 45 acres east of I-15 and north of U.S. Highway 6, near the Walmart Supercenter.
"This is a growing community," said Francis Gibson, Intermountain Healthcare adminstrator. "We've continued to see this part of Utah County have business and residential growth rates increasing every year for the past eight to 10 years. This is a community that looks for excellence in every facet of their lives, and providing a great new hospital fits within their vision of greatness."
At a cost of roughly $150 million, Spanish Fork Hospital will reduce the distance patients must travel for certain health care services, and will focus on women's and medical/surgical services associated with a community hospital. The new facility will include five labor and delivery rooms; two C-section rooms; two antepartum rooms; and a dozen postpartum beds.
A total of 12 emergency department rooms and four operating rooms also are being built, along with two gastroenterology suites. In addition, imaging services such as CT, radiology and MRI will be available, along with cardiopulmonary diagnostic testing and infusion therapy. An onsite medical office building and Intermountain InstaCare will provide other services.
The four-level hospital will serve southern Utah county and the communities of Spanish Fork, Springville, Mapleton, Elk Ridge, Payson, Woodland Hills, Santaquin and possibly Nephi.
"Thus far, we have had very positive community reaction and anticipation of the great care and community involvement Intermountain will bring to this area," said Gibson. "We are blessed in this part of Utah with the proximity of the mountains. Natural light and beautiful views and the ability to see these majestic mountains will provide a great healing environment for patients."
Gibson said it's rewarding to build a facility that will serve so many people in need of medical care.
"I live in this community, and it will be a great asset to the area. I am excited to be part of this project and the opportunity I have to live and work and serve this community."
Okland Construction is serving as general contractor of the new hospital. Work began in August 2018, following a somewhat unconventional groundbreaking ceremony.
"Spanish Fork and the surrounding areas have made great agriculture and farming contributions to the state and nation," said Gibson. "Corn, alfalfa, fruits and vegetables have come from this community for many, many years. We wanted to pay tribute to this heritage and traditions by using mule teams and old plows to turn the earth and open the grounds for new beginnings. We wanted to transform the traditional farming culture and pay respect to those traditions, while ushering in a new technological advanced medical center."
The project is being funded by Intermountain; however, many in the community will make small contributions. Others are expected to provide significant philanthropic donations to help cover costs.
Seeing construction finally under way is extremely gratifying to Gibson and others involved in the project, who've waited patiently for work to commence for more than a decade.
"This has been discussed and planned for over ten years. Now is the time to create a facility that will serve this community for the next 50 years or so. I feel very happy and blessed to be part of this complex process."
According to Josh Rohatinsky, project manager, Spanish Fork Hospital, there is a great deal of work to be performed, with the final schedule in place.
"The construction timeline is just over two years, so we are planning to open up in fall of 2020. Site work will be the only activity taking place for the next little while. We will be bringing in soil and prepping the site for footings.
"The conclusion of the design phase is a major milestone in a project like this, and we passed that line a few months ago. As early as we are in the process, only minor site work has taken place."
As for the condition of the property before work began, "It was an empty field," said Rohatinsky. "Years ago, Intermountain Healthcare owned land closer to Highway 6 and performed a swap with the city to acquire this land."
Some clearing is required, with a significant amount of soil being brought in to the job site. No demolition was needed, allowing crews to focus on other tasks.
Rohatinsky acknowledged that building a hospital differs from more traditional projects, as far as the sensitive environment and preparing for medical equipment that will have to be put in place.
"The building of a hospital is unique in the sense that we are building an environment to house ill patients in critical situations that require specific conditions. The planning for a space like this is very detailed, and code requirements are stringent for a good reason. Any deviation from these very specific requirements can be life-threatening. We want to ensure we provide the safest environment possible for our patients."
Said Gibson, "It's my hope that people never need a hospital and can live healthy lives; however, we know that people will need a hospital at some time in their lives. When this happens, I want Spanish Fork Hospital to be place of comfort and confidence that we as a team at the hospital can help them heal. I want the hospital to be a resource for education and learning of how to live the healthiest lives possible."
Intermountain Healthcare is a not-for-profit system of 22 hospitals, a medical group with more than 1,600 physicians and advanced practice clinicians at roughly 180 clinics, a health plans division known as SelectHealth and other health services.
Intermountain Healthcare was established in 1975 when The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints donated its 15-hospital system to the communities they served. Intermountain was formed as a secular not-for-profit organization to administer those hospitals.