After months of demolition, construction resumes on the Langlade Hospital campus today.
Administrator Dave Schneider announced Tuesday that the Religious Hospitallers of St. Joseph and Aspirus are partnering to build the Langlade Hospital Center for Health and Performance, with completion in May. It will be located in an area that was previously home to the original hospital building, removed during a summer-long demolition project.
The $3.18 million facility will be about 17,000 square feet, triple the size of the hospital’s sports medicine complex now located on Antigo’s north side.
“This is a very special project,” Schneider, joined by Diane Peterson, rehabilitation manager, and Greg Renfro, supervisor for the facility, said. “This is a unique concept for northcentral Wisconsin and represents a major commitment to the future of health care in the community on the part of the Religious Hospitallers and Aspirus.”
The renamed Center for Health and Performance, with Dr. Bart Kneeland as medical director, will cater to a wide audience, including patients with rehabilitation needs, student athletes, and members of the public interested in improving their health and fitness in a medically supervised setting.
The center will feature medically supervised guidance and a trained staff who will develop individualized programs for participants to meet their special needs, whether it involves cardiac improvements, increases in mobility following joint replacements, or general fitness. Physician approval is required.
Peterson stressed that participants at the Center for Health and Performance will receive ongoing monitoring and regular evaluations of their fitness programs by staff.
“We’re offering more preventive services in addition to meeting the needs of patients with chronic conditions,” she said.
The expansive facility will include a main floor walking track, a large sports court, plenty of room for specialized fitness machines, locker and shower rooms, treatment cubicles and offices.
The mezzanine level will have an elevated track circling the main floor along with additional equipment, registration and check-out.
Renfro said the facility will feature an expanded line of aerobic equipment, televisions, wireless access, sprint tracks, curtained court areas, and free and machine weights as well as the walking tracks.
“This facility will allow us to assist anyone, no matter what his or her performance, fitness or wellness goals may be,” Renfro said.
The entire building will be an extension off the south side of the Aspirus General Clinic, which is also undergoing extensive lower level and first floor improvements, renovations and an addition for full-time cardiac care. The hospital’s physical therapy and orthopedic departments are located on the second level.
The proximity to the main hospital and clinic will also allow easy sharing of staff for educational programs, Peterson said.
“We can utilize a lot of different experts on-site,” she said, something that is difficult now due to the location of the sports medicine center across town.
Renfro said the focus will be on improvement of athletic performance as well as preventive care and general health improvements.
“We’re really jumping into the preventive game. That’s the future of health care,” he said, adding that research has clearly shown that physical activity is a prerequisite to preventing disease and injury. “As more and more research is being completed, it is becoming clear that in order to keep a body well and disease free, it requires regular exercise and movement. Exercise is medicine.”