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Groundbreaking starts Waupun care facility project

Several years of intensive planning showed results as Agnesian HealthCare and Christian Home & Rehabilitation Center broke ground Monday night.

About 40 citizens and dignitaries gathered for the event at the site along Highway 68.

Speakers were enthusiastic to see the dream take shape as they shared their hopes for the future.

“We are so very proud to bring this new facility to the Waupun community,” said Doug Trost, St. Francis Home president and chief executive officer. “The community has been so incredibly supportive of the Christian Home, and we are excited with the new opportunities this state-of-the-art, long-term care facility will offer to older adults and their families. We are blessed to have reached this landmark thanks to the hardworking and faithful support of so many people.”

Sr. Susan Seeby spoke of the strong ties with the Congregation of St. Agnes, and her hopes for the new facility.

“The Christian Home holds such a special place in the hearts and minds of this community,” she said. “What an incredible journey this important service has had, and it’s really very, very inspiring. It took the coordinated efforts and passions of many churches to create the legacy we are celebrating today. What a beautiful gift they have brought to this community.”

Sue Buwalda, past president of the Christian Home Board of Directors, spoke next.

“I cannot express how much this not only means to me, but to every past board member,” she said. “We have been waiting for this for a long time. The Christian Home vision began almost 70 years ago. Many churches came together to address a need. There was no place for the elderly to be taken care of properly, and there was also an unemployment problem. The Christian Home addressed those two problems.

“It was not until 1954 that the foundations for the first facility were set, just as we are doing today. We will continue our mission for many generations, and churches will continue their involvement through the Christian Home Auxiliary. This is very much a blessing.”

The new 89,000-square-foot, $22.4 million project will feature a 50-bed nursing home and a 30-apartment assisted living facility.

The nursing home will feature all private rooms, each containing a private bathroom with an ADA-accessible shower. It will include two wings for long-term residents and a short-stay rehabilitation wing with a 2,436-square-foot rehabilitation gym. Rehabilitation services will be provided on both an outpatient and inpatient basis.

Attached to the nursing home will be a new two-story assisted living facility featuring two studio apartments, 26 one-bedroom apartments, and a pair of two-bedroom apartments. The assisted living facility will have a library/media center, a fitness center and common areas for socializing.

The campus will feature a central core area with a chapel, kitchen, administrative offices, gift shop, bistro and a two-story atrium lobby.

Construction of an 18-bed memory care facility will also expand Agnesian HealthCare’s memory care services in Waupun to 36 beds.

The new facility continues to reflect Agnesian HealthCare’s commitment to offering long-term care now and well into the future.

“We’re building not only for Waupun, we’re building for the surrounding area. We’re building for the future,” said Steve Little, Agnesian HealthCare president and chief executive officer. “As Waupun grows, we will grow. As the Christian Home and Waupun Memorial Hospital grows, the dedication and commitment of the Agnesian HealthCare will also grow. Together, we hope to be here a long time to provide high quality of care in this modern facility utilizing the latest in long-term care approaches.

“The big elephant in the room is the fear that with Agnesion Healthcare transferring its sponsorship to this large Catholic healthcare system out of St. Louis, they’re going to come in and shut it all down because it’s not meeting its financial targets. The answer is ‘No way.’ There is a provision in our agreement with SSM that requires them to keep all these facilities operating. You have my word that as long as I’m here it, including the Christian Home, will continue to serve the community. We will not let you down.”

Construction is will be completed by late 2018. Hoffman Planning, Design & Construction is serving as the project’s architect with CD Smith Construction as general contractor.

Story from Daily Citizen.

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