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Groundbreaking Ceremony Held for New Health Clinic
A groundbreaking ceremony for the “Kimball Community Health Center”, a primary care health clinic in Fort Fairfield was held on October 5,2012 at 10 A.M.
Healthcare Committee member Gary Sirois stated, “After much work our community will enjoy healthcare stability once again. Back in the late 1940's the community banded together to ensure sustainable quality healthcare by developing the Community General Hospital. The community has once again come together to develop the new Kimball Community Health Center. This is great for Fort Fairfield.”
The clinic is being named after Dr. Herrick Kimball, in recognition of his leadership in the developing of the then new Community General Hospital (CGH). Dr. Kimball's vision of healthcare in Fort Fairfield went beyond the role of a physician; he owned and operated the first hospital in Fort Fairfield and played an instrumental role in the planning and implementation of the project that ultimately led to a new state of the art hospital for Fort Fairfield.
The project has been approved by the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development to receive funding. Funding for the project in addition to this grant includes development fees from the Fort Fairfield Residential Development Corporation's senior citizens' project, and a partnership between the Town of Fort Fairfield and Pines Health Services. Fort Fairfield's clinic will be built without affecting the community's property taxes. The Health Center will be located off of Presque Isle Street on Harmony Lane in Fort Fairfield, next to the senior citizen housing.
“This health center is a culmination of four years of hard work, involving three different citizen committees and the Town Council. The goal has always been for the community to have an open dialogue with a healthcare provider regarding economically sustainable healthcare services to our citizens,” said Dan Foster, Town Manager of Fort Fairfield. “The ability to establish a partnership that is mutually beneficial is paramount for the ongoing delivery of healthcare in Fort Fairfield. Owning this facility allows us to reduce the overhead costs of the provider, enabling them the opportunity to deliver the integrated health services needed by our community while managing their costs in what has become a financially challenged environment for healthcare providers. The Kimball Community Health Center will allow us to do just that.
The engineering firm B.R. Smith and Associates of Presque Isle has designed the facility and A&L Construction Company from Presque Isle has been selected as the general contractor. The construction schedule should allow for occupancy in June of 2013. The total project cost is $841,835. This includes infrastructure costs, architectural & engineering, legal, pre-development costs and construction.
The developer and owner for the project is the Town of Fort Fairfield, which has entered into a lease and contract for services with Pines Health Services to operate the health center. Pines operates community health centers in Caribou, Presque Isle, Van Buren and the Loring Commerce Centre. Jim Davis, Chief Executive officer of Pines Health Services commented that Pines is extremely excited regarding this opportunity to provide health care services in Fort Fairfield. The Town understands the unique financial challenges faced by healthcare providers. Fort Fairfield's ability to provide this facility was instrumental in assuring us that this partnership to provide quality, affordable and patient-centered healthcare to the residents of this community will be successful'“
For additional information about accessing services at the Kimball community Health Center please contact Brian Martin at Pines Health Services at (207) 498-2356.
Fort Fairfield Journal ©2012 David R. Deschesne, All Rights Reserved