Ribbon cutting gets new downtown hospital ready to launch

Published: Nov. 12, 2021 at 6:42 PM EST
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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Fort Wayne’s NBC) -The countdown is on to the opening of the new Lutheran Downtown Hospital. Patients will be welcomed into the new state-of-the-art healthcare facility Saturday, which is a replacement for the old St. Joseph Hospital next door. The $112-million Lutheran complex was essentially launched with a ribbon cutting involving Lutheran healthcare officials, Mayor Tom Henry and others.

The new facility features 60 beds, less than what is available at the older St. Joe medical center. But there are larger rooms and larger windows in the new hospital. Four operating rooms will be equipped with robotics that are designed to minimize the risk of surgical complications and push quicker recovery times.

Lutheran is already looking beyond the launch.

“This hospital was designed for expansion. So as our community needs additional services and beds we’ll be able to add a sixth floor. We can add additional ORs. We have an additional shelf space for a second cath lab, so, just really pleased with the design and the ability to continue to grow,” said Twilla Lee, the Lutheran Downtown Hospital CEO.

Mayor Henry anticipates more healthcare investments in the city by Parkview Health, Lutheran and I-U Health.

“The three systems that are here serve not only Fort Wayne and Allen County, but all the contiguous counties and actually the layer of counties outside of that so they have a huge footprint in the area and they are constantly looking around to make sure that the healthcare needs are being met,” Henry said.

St. Joseph Hospital will have the lights turned out Saturday morning.

Demolition will start on that facility in early December, a process that will take about 18 months.

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