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LVHN to build hospital on 35 acres near Walmart in Mahoning

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    An artist’s rendering of the 89,000-square-foot hospital to be built in Mahoning Township. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

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    An aerial view from Walmart overlooking the land where the new LVHN hospital is proposed. See a video of the proposed site at BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS

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    Map provided by Lehigh Valley Health Network shows the central location of the proposed hospital. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

Published August 01. 2019 01:32PM


Lehigh Valley Health Network announced plans Thursday to build a new, $65 million hospital along Route 443 in Mahoning Township.

The 89,000-square-foot facility, to be called Lehigh Valley Hospital (LVH)−Carbon, will be constructed on 35 acres of open farmland on the north side of Blakeslee Boulevard, catty-corner to the Walmart Superstore. Initial plans call for a hospital that includes all private rooms for inpatient care, and a medical office building.

“We’ve been taking really great care of patients in that area for decades,” Brian Nester, LVHN’s president and chief executive officer, said.

“In the past, we did that through a very strong relationship with Blue Mountain Health System. They chose to go in another direction and we were very disappointed about that, but it’s long been our philosophy to keep people in their community and not have them have to travel for health care. This is a new and exciting project that we feel helps cement the relationships we have forged in the Carbon County area over the years.”

The health network expects to break ground on the project next spring, and opening is anticipated in the fall of 2021. The hospital is expected to create about 150 new jobs in the network.

Surveyors have been working this week at the property, which is owned by Oscar Beck.

“It is centrally located to so many population centers here in the area,” said Terry Purcell, LVHN’s vice president for market development, who will serve as president of the new hospital. “We met with the Mahoning Township supervisor chairman, and they seem very excited about and supportive of this project.”

LVHN employees have also been notified by email.

At the outset, the hospital will have 18 beds with the opportunity to expand as the need arises. In addition to Carbon County, Purcell said he envisions the hospital drawing patients from the Coaldale and Tamaqua areas as well.

Nestor said the hospital is expected to provide a multitude of services including radiology and advanced imaging, including MRI; inpatient and outpatient surgical services; a full-service emergency department including a helipad; cardiology (Lehigh Valley Heart Institute); breast health services; rehab services; expanded cancer services (Lehigh Valley Cancer Institute) as the only health system in Carbon County affiliated with Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center giving patients access to the latest treatments and clinical trials; and complete telemedicine services allowing for consults among clinicians across LVHN.

“There is a lot of competition in health care in the area, but Carbon County residents always had a strong interest in the Lehigh Valley Health Network,” Purcell said.

“We had 30 percent of the market share, and that was without a hospital in the community. Now we can bring that care closer to home for those patients. When you’re having a heart attack, they say time is muscle. When you’re having a stroke, they say time is brain. You want to get to the closest facility as fast as you can, and now our patients here will have a much shorter trip.”

Purcell joined LVHN in September 2018 after previously serving as president with St. Luke’s University Health Network and at the former Blue Mountain Health System for 12 years where his last role was senior vice president of operations. LVHN officials said Thursday he’s the “right guy” to lead the new hospital.

“He’s caring, patient friendly and well-known in the community,” Nester said. “He’s someone you can trust and pleased to have him be a key representative.”

Nester said LVHN plans to continue to foster relationships with health care providers who are not employed by LVHN but practice independently.

“By having a modern health care facility in Carbon County, we will strengthen partnerships with those independent providers and other community-minded organizations that are aligned with our mission to heal, comfort and care.”

Other openings

The new hospital is the latest of several new facilities and services LVHN has recently announced in Carbon County.

An ExpressCARE location in Lehighton at 363 N. First St. is scheduled to open Sept. 3, while a location in Palmerton in the Pencor Services Inc. building at 528 Delaware Ave. will open Oct. 28.

According to Nester, these will be LVHN’s 20th and 21st ExpressCARE facilities providing residents with access to treatment for common illnesses and minor injuries without an appointment including sprains and strains, cuts and lacerations, poison ivy, rashes, seasonal allergies, flu symptoms, bronchitis, ear infections, sore throat and fever. ExpressCARE will be open 365 days a year. Hours of operation will be announced closer to the openings.

The local hospital will join eight others currently in LVHN’s network including three in Allentown, one in Bethlehem, one in East Stroudsburg, one in Hazleton and two in Pottsville.

It also plans to open a 156,000-square-foot hospital and medical office building just off Route 33 on Hecktown Road in Lower Nazareth in the fall of 2020.



More farmland and open space paved over for yet another hospital to add to the dozens of half-empty facilities in the region. Based on the number of health care facilities proposed and recently built here, Carbon County must have one of the unhealthiest populations in the nation.
I believe the Beck Family, at one time farmed the area in question. As the older family members passed the farm went from edibles, animal and vegetable, to Christmas tree farming. Correct me as I am not certain if this progression.
The good thing is 150 new jobs for the area.
No young ppl coming to PA. Just us unhealthy oldies living here now.
Seriously tho', there is a huge chasm when it comes to easy , quick access to high quality healthcare in the area. LVHN and St. Luke's are now in our backyard.
Even healthy ppl have emergencies.
Carbon and Schuylkill Counties are in the top unhealthiest counties in PA. There was an article about this a few months ago. Better health care needs to be available in our area.
Well, now you have your choice. St. Luke's in Franklin Twsp. and LVH in the Mahoning Valley.
Question to anyone in the know. Is the land for the hospital, which was acquired from Mr. Oscar Beck, currently occupied by the M.V Farmer's Market and the Race Track? From the video, it appears to be one and the same.

Making America Great Again
There is so much construction going on. Why didn't we see this under the last POTUS?
Yo people!! This is Lehighton, Carbon County. We buy Kia's and shop at the Dollar General.
Kovatch lost the Cadillac dealership 25 years ago!

Somethings up. Two hospitals centrally located in the poorest part of one of the poorest counties. Generally speaking I'd say if it's a poor area there's not a lot of employer provided health care. Unless you consider welfare an employer. Maybe big healthcare knows something about universal healthcare that I don't.

I thought I read that Gov't health care has been aggressively managing the cases. Not paying for repeat treatment in a certain time frame? Or maybe that was some of the mainstream health care providers. I can't remember, but I'm positive I read something like that. Maybe someone can jump in that knows some more details.

My monthly healthcare premium costs waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay more than a Cadillac would (non-smokers with a young family).
Carbon and Schuylkill are in the top unhealthiest counties in PA. Better healthcare is needed in our area. There was an article in the paper regarding the need for healthcare a few months back in early spring. Some residents do not have transportation means, St. Lukes and LVHN do provide transportation services for the patients that have a medical condition and need care. It was offered by both facilities for my father when he was diagnosed with Cancer and I was having a difficult time making the appointments around my work schedule for the care he needed. My family found a way to do it so those who truly need it received it. You mention about the hefty premiums you pay for healthcare, monitor your Explanation of Benefits and see what is truly paid to your health care providers. On average insurance companies pay 30% (if that) of total charges. There are times when a Medical Assistance payment is larger than a major insurance company for inpatient care. Now most facilities have to fight to collect what is owed for the care provided when the provider followed the insurance company policies. All insurances have a policy regarding inpatient re-admissions (what you refer to as repeat care) for care previously provided in an inpatient stay. This is caused by many different reasons. I am in the healthcare industry.
T2C you are a hateful whack job. You insult President Trump as you display a low intellect. You should be ashamed of yourself. You have a big mouth and a small brain. Your kidney stone was probably your brain. You should be more humble in the presence of those that are smarter than you. Where do you think you get the right to bully people around from? All bullies are weak and rude. Clean up your dirty act! It is so funny when you call people idiots when they are far superior to you. How is this even possible?
This is great news for the community.

Choices - check
Construction Jobs - check
Hospital jobs - check
Access to medical care - check
Creates competition - check

One down side is the cost to the public and retailers along 443 as the widening gets closer. Every 443 property is in play, and the scramble continues. Welfare wallets, working wallets, all hold green money.

As for Franklin, when the politicians wouldn't listen to the people and Oust the F ormer one, we, as citizens, voted for better politicians. Sticky ones out, new ones in. Instantly, the township improved and the F ormar was Ousted, resigned I believe, and just days after the election. Good riddance to the politician and the Ousted one.

This election is another chance to 'take their seats'. The incumbents that fail to listen to the people should be voted out. Corruption in local government has far more daily impact on us as citizens. As we bring transparency to the corrupt and immoral decisions, like what was happening in Franklin, the entire community wins.

Remove sticky politicians, remove all incumbents, hold politicians accountable.
Register to vote, and vote. These corrupt politicians count on your silence. Trust, but Verify. Ask questions and demand a response. Your silence is your compliance.


Citizen David F. Bradley Sr.

Good luck getting this past Mr. Faust. But you probably have enough money to pay him off.
All these hospitals and urgent care centers in the area yet the V.A. wants me to go to St. Clair to use the new urgent care option. Can you say KICKBACKS
It is possible that the VA has a contract with St. Clair to get the veterans the care needed more timely for veterans. LVHN has a program, I know this because I am a veteran. There are no kick backs for facilities or the VA.
Mr. Abrupt.
Speak for Yourself. I would not buy a Kia .And many people but out of county for cars. I have upscale cars and I got them from NJ and New York.
You have a wide variety of incomes in Carbon. The working class usually drive out of County to work and have health insurance. This is a Small County so it is not Rich, it never was. But it is improving from 20. 40 years ago that I have seen. 443 was just quiet farm land back then with the Mall. We did not have the influx of people moving in from the Cities to live here like we do now. This is because Monroe County became over crowed. We are getting retired people from other areas so the need is there.

I am glad Lehigh Valley is coming here. I did not like how St Lukes had taken over the entire area. It felt like I did not have a choice in Health care and that St Lukes was Monopolizing the area. I certainly plain to use Lehigh Valley as my Hospital.

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