It’s no secret that retail outlets have suffered in recent years. At the same time, the healthcare system faces its own set of obstacles as limited access to medical care. In a blog on the Medical Design & Construction magazine website, Bill Brintnall and Elizabeth Grube say there is a viable solution for both.
"One option quickly gaining notoriety takes abandoned retail spaces and converts them into accessible healthcare facilities. Studies show that vacant spaces can attract crime and lead to increased violence in surrounding areas. Repurposing these empty properties to serve the needs of a community will help restore neighborhoods that have felt adverse effects of the economic downturn," they wrote.
The closing of 399 Borders stores nationwide presented a unique opportunity for the MemorialCare Health System, the blog said. In a design/build partnership, RTKL teamed with Hanna Construction to design and reconstruct a medical clinic within the now defunct retail space. The new clinic integrates healthcare into a community setting and is designed to support the California physician integration model.
Outpatient facilities like MemorialCare can allow for:
• Convenient healthcare
• Increased revenue for medical systems
• Decreased overcrowding in emergency departments
Read the blog.