Today, ClearSky Health announced plans to build a new 30-bed inpatient rehabilitation hospital in Elwood, Kansas. The hospital is expected to treat about 650 patients annually who are living with disabling injuries or illnesses such as strokes, brain injuries, hip fractures, spinal injuries, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, or other debilitating conditions such as COVID-19.
“We know that we can contribute to the area positively by providing a specialized level of rehabilitative care that’s available only through inpatient facilities,” says Darby Brockette, CEO of ClearSky Health. Brockette cites a national study that shows patients treated at inpatient rehabilitation hospitals return home sooner, remain home longer, have fewer hospital readmissions and ER visits, and live longer versus other types of rehabilitation programs.
The Elwood site for the hospital is located close to the Kansas border, west of St. Joseph, Missouri. Brockette says the location was selected with the intent of serving both Elwood and St. Joseph markets.
“The location is unique in that it allows us to serve patients from both states,” he says. “The greater area has an unmet need for rehabilitation services, and was selected with guidance from both towns’ community and medical leadership. We feel with our proven expertise and knowledge, we can make an impact by providing services that individuals can receive close to their homes.”
Brockette explains that a typical hospital stay for a patient receiving inpatient rehabilitation is about 12-14 days. “If patients and their families have to travel to receive these services, it can be a financial and emotional hardship,” he says.
“Having ClearSky Health join our county is a win/win situation,” says Leah Johnson, Economic Development Director of Doniphan County, Kansas. “Not only will patients have access to this higher level of rehabilitative care, but the hospital also will provide about 100 new healthcare-related jobs.”
Elwood Mayor Timmy Kieser agrees. “The hospital will provide local citizens with more career opportunities while also complementing and strengthening current local healthcare services,” he says. “It will help us continue to support and expand the quality of life for members of our community.”
The planned hospital will be about 40,000 square feet. It will feature all private rooms, a rehabilitative gym, dining room, and an activity of daily living space. Services will be physician-led and will include physical, occupational, and speech therapy; rehabilitative nursing; case management; respiratory therapy, dietary services, and other specialized care.
Davin Turner, DO, Chief Medical Officer/President of Mosaic Medical Center St. Joseph, says they welcome ClearSky Health. “Our health system is committed to the highest level of quality care for our patients,” he says. “We know our stroke patients and those we treat at our Level 2 trauma center who need continuing care and rehabilitation do best when they are closer to their families and friends while they heal.”
Groundbreaking for the new hospital is planned for this Fall; with the opening expected Winter 2022.