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Informational meeting set on proposed assisted living facility

by Eric Mullens
WALSENBURG — The Huerfano County Hospital District Board of Directors met in regular session last Thursday and with the completion of the latest project; the emergency department renovation and expansion, are ready now to move forward with discussions regarding the next project for the health care campus, an assisted living facility being proposed by the Spanish Peaks Community Foundation (SPCF).
Spanish Peaks Regional Health Center CEO Todd Oberheu, told board members there will be an opportunity to learn more about the proposed facility at a SPCF membership meeting at 6:15 pm Wednesday, March 13 at the Huerfano County Community Center in Walsenburg. Representatives from Neenam Archistructure, a Fort Collins-based design and construction firm, will be on hand to present preliminary information on the facility. Neenan has experience in these types of projects and its representatives are expected to show various design drawings. The meeting is open to the public and citizen input and comments will be very welcome.
Neenan is the general contractor and design firm that worked on the emergency department for SPRHC.
On that topic, staff and board members will announce a date in early May for a public open house for the newly renovated and expanded emergency department.
In other business the board passed two resolutions, one dealing with the official posting of meeting agendas and the other in recognition of Dr. John ‘Sandy’ Carlton, for his outstanding work and achievements and dedication to the community and the SPRHC.
Oberheu said in his report the Healthcare Foundation raised over $5,000 from its annual wine tasting event at the La Plaza Inn. He said, the Foundation has doubled its assets since 2009, growing them to over $80,000 and increasing the amount of scholarships provided.
He also announced the Outreach Clinic has been notified the state will assist in funding the Women’s Wellness Connection program with $87,210 financial commitment; up from the prior funding level of $63,214. These additional funds will help increase the number of clients that may be served in the program and allow for additional outreach into the Las Animas County area.
Oberheu reported LiveWell Huerfano has provided funds for a number of projects, including; assistance to purchase land in downtown Walsenburg for a pocket park and funding to La Veta Schools for construction of their new playground. Architect Don Spencer donated his time and expertise to design the playground without cost to the school district.
Oberheu also presented the CSVNH-Walsenburg report for director Marty Schlink, who, along with Bill Gust and Nancy Corsentino were attending the National Association of State Veterans Homes meeting in Washington, DC last week. He announced a near record high resident census at the nursing home of 114. The largest number of residents has been 118.
Congratulations were offered to the entire staff of acute care, the speciality clinic, outreach and the La Veta Clinic for a great survey. The report said, their months of preparation and hard work were rewarded with an outcome that substantiated to all, that we have a great medical facility caring for our community.
A monthly visit by musical therapist Pamela Jackson, has proven to be very popular with up to 60 residents taking part in the programs, including the drum circle that was a highlight of last week’s program.
Preparations are underway for a grand celebration of the nursing home’s 20th anniversary beginning on April 13, with tours of all of the Spanish Peaks Regional Health Center’s and CSVNH’s facilities. Various departments will be featured and the Health Fair will be held on Saturday, April 20 to complete the celebration of healthcare in the Spanish Peaks region.

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