WILLMAR, MN (September 3, 2015) – Construction of Rice Memorial Hospital’s new Rice Rehabilitation Center begins this month, led by Marcus Construction of Willmar. The new state-of-the-art facility will be located where the former Jade Center building stood on Trott Avenue, and will be connected to the hospital via underground tunnel.
Therapists from Rice Rehabilitation Center were on site to witness the demolition of the Jade Center building, and to commemorate the official groundbreaking for the new facility.
“We’ve been waiting for this day for a long time,” said Lynn Stier, Director of Rice Rehabilitation Center.
Demand for pediatric and adult rehabilitation services at Rice has grown steadily over the past several years. Pediatric visits have averaged over 6,000 for the past two years, and adult visits nearly 20,000 per year, with a 5.2% increase in 2014. To accommodate this growth, Rice Rehab has expanded its operations several times, and is currently housed in five separate locations.
The new 10,800 square foot facility will bring all programs and services under one roof, providing convenient access for patients, visitors, and providers. It will include two gyms (one for adults and one for children), locker rooms, showers, and a 4-person, variable-depth pool with an adjustable floor for easy access.
Rice Health Foundation recently launched the “Restoring health. Restoring hope.” capital campaign to raise funds for the pediatric portion of the new Rehabilitation Center. The campaign aims to raise $1.5 million, with an immediate goal of raising $500,000 by November 30. If the goal is met, a local couple has agreed to match the funds dollar-for-dollar, bumping them to the $1 million mark.
“This is a wonderful opportunity to support a much-needed project that will have significant regional impact,” said Shirley Carter, Executive Director of Rice Health Foundation.
Currently, Rice Rehabilitation Center serves clients from 38 counties in Minnesota. While its primary service area includes Kandiyohi, Chippewa, Renville, and Swift counties, many patients also come from Big Stone, Pope, Lac qui Parle, Redwood, Meeker, Stearns, Lyon, and Yellow Medicine counties.
“We see some patients from as far away as Duluth or the Twin Cities,” said Stier. “The need is definitely there.”
Outpatient therapy services began at Rice in 1987, with the introduction of a pilot program for cardiovascular health and rehabilitation services. In 1999, Rice Rehabilitation Center opened its doors and expanded to include services for occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech and language therapy.
Today, Rice Rehab has grown to include several specialty therapies, including cancer rehabilitation, certified hand therapy, driving and wheelchair assessments, ImPACT concussion management, pediatric therapies, swallow evaluations, and strategic orthopedics for headaches, neck, and back pain.
Rice Health Foundation is a non-profit charitable organization that raises philanthropic support for the Rice organization to address community health needs, enhance patient care, and provide health education opportunities. In 2014, Rice Health Foundation provided $1,050,400 to Rice Memorial Hospital for a variety of programs, services, technology, and equipment. For more information, or to make a donation, please visit www.RiceHealthFoundation.org.