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      Blessing breaks ground on future patient care center

      The new patient room addition will be complete in 2 years.

      Healthcare in Quincy is going sky-high.

      The grounds at 10th and Oak Streets in Quincy will soon transform into a $70 million, five-story patient room facility for Blessing Hospital.

      "For the last 19 years, we have been a two-campus hospital system," Maureen Kahn, Blessing president and CEO said during a groundbreaking on Monday.

      This new addition will consolidate the hospital into one location bringing all of its inpatient care from its 14th street campus to the 11th street campus. This will allow Blessing to manage the 14th street campus as an office space rather than a hospital, which will lower the cost of operations.

      "It will allow the staff to cooperate and work more closely with the patients and physicians to really do good care," Dr. Tom Miller, a Blessing family physician said.

      "This is a tremendous thing for our region, certainly one I think we'll enjoy for years and years to come," Mayor John Spring said.

      The new facility will also bring a boost to the local economy during the two years of its construction.

      "A minimum of 65 percent of the construction will be done by local contractors," Tim Koontz, chair for the Blessing Board of Trustees said.

      The patient room addition will house 52 new single bedrooms in addition to the creation of 52 more beds in Blessing's current facility.

      Much has changed since 1875 when the original Blessing Hospital housed 19 rooms for the sick and the poor.

      During construction, hospital parking will shift to different areas, including lots where Cancer Center patients usually park. Also, Oak Street between 10th and 11th streets will close and will not reopen.