Got a question? Submit your questions on the project and we will continue to answer them and update this list.
How much will this project cost and where will the money come from?
While the final project cost will be determined soon, it's important to remember this is an investment in our community and community health. We hope you will consider contributing to this investment."
Why can't you simply remodel the old building?
The current hospital was built in 1951-1953. The building has seen numerous updates and additions. The cost of bringing the building to the standard expected by patients is higher than the cost of building new. Other factors include the need to shut down entire areas of the facility to allow for construction and abatement of asbestos.
When will you break ground?
Our plan is to break ground in Spring 2019. In 2018, we will be finalizing our construction plans, seeking subcontractors and securing our funding.
Will my taxes go up?
Gundersen St. Joseph's does not receive reimbursement from the city of Hillsboro, Elroy or Wonewoc, and therefore does not have an impact on local taxes.
Will my medical bills go up?
Gundersen St. Joseph's has a history of no price increases for the last several years. Controlling the cost of healthcare is an integral part of the mission of Gundersen St. Joseph's, and the organization will look to increase revenue through increased volume, not through price increases. Indeed, Gundersen St. Joseph's constantly reviews its charge master to review where patient savings can be made.
What happened to the two houses next door?
Considering project cost, our budget and the necessary project footprint, Gundersen St. Joseph's purchased property east of the current hospital, including two houses and two garages. The houses were deconstructed by a local company to salvage materials for reuse, and the garages were deconstructed and moved to new locations.
What will happen with the green space on the edge of town?
This is currently owned by Gundersen St. Joseph's and is being leased for farming. There is currently no plan for the land to be sold or used for anything else at this moment.
Why did you not build on the green space?
The location currently does not have utilities. Rather than take on the expense of supplying utilities to that property, we decided to put that money directly into patient care.
Why do we need fancy services like knee replacements? Can't we simply have an emergency room and a clinic?
A key factor in population health is "access." Having a range of healthcare services close to home is better for patient outcomes. Patients are more likely to keep appointments when they don't have far to travel. A common trend in healthcare is towards same-day outpatient procedures. As medical technology advances, more and more of these procedures can be done locally. Furthermore, because these are same-day procedures, it's possible for patients to be at home recovering instead of enduring a 90 minute drive from a facility in a larger city. Seeking care close to home is also better for the environment. A surgeon travelling from La Crosse to see twelve patients in Hillsboro removes twelve vehicles from the road, which would travel the same distance. There is also a financial benefit to the patient and organization. Specialty services such as ophthalmology, orthopedics and general surgery generate money to keep the organization going. The cost of providing emergency and urgent care is high and so rural, critical access hospitals need to diversify their product portfolio into specialty services to ensure they can afford to continue to offer emergency and urgent care.
Will we see the name changed back to include "memorial?"
We are very aware of the legacy of our current facility and the sincere place it holds in the hearts of our community. There is no plan to change the name of Gundersen St. Joseph's Hospital. However, we feel it is incredibly important to recognize our history in the new facility.