Alton Memorial Hospital and BJC Medical Group are expanding their presence in Madison County with a new medical office building that opened for business Monday, Aug. 26.
The new building houses an expanded Family Physicians of Bethalto practice, while adding Alton Memorial Convenient Care and a Network Reference Lab. The building, located at 163 East Bethalto Drive, is replacing the former Family Physicians of Bethalto building next door. At nearly 9,000 square feet, it will be four times the size of the former office and will be able to accommodate additional providers for growing primary care needs.
Dr. Craig Harms, who has been in practice in the community for more than 10 years, leads the patient care team, which currently includes nurse practitioners Denise Schleeper and Lindsay Naylor, with plans to add an additional practitioner in the late fall. New patients are now being accepted and they can call (618) 433-6490 for an appointment or for additional information.
Alton Memorial Hospital President Dave Braasch said that the new building will enhance the mission to provide more timely access to primary health care.
“We are thrilled to be able to expand our access and offerings in Bethalto,” Braasch said. “We always look at ways we can improve the health of the people and communities we serve, and this is another way we can do just that.”
Alton Memorial Convenient Care at Bethalto, also operated by the BJC Medical Group, will offer walk-in services from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week starting Aug. 26. The services offered there mirror those of the AMCC in Godfrey, treating minor illnesses and injuries. No appointments are necessary. The phone number is (618) 433-6640.
The Network Reference Lab will improve convenience for Family Physicians of Bethalto and Convenient Care patients by having blood drawing services available on-site, performed by an experienced phlebotomy team. In addition, any patient from any practice who presents with a valid physician order for blood work can utilize this facility. All insurances participating with BJC will be accepted. The lab is located directly to the left of the main entrance and is open 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Appointments are not required.
“The goal of the new building is to provide a place that makes maintaining your health easier, and I’m confident we have accomplished that,” said Robin Kleiner, practice administrator for Family Physicians of Bethalto. “Every detail — from improved parking, to construction, to services, to staff and providers –was determined based on the needs of this community. Our patients will receive excellent patient care and be treated just as if they are family.”
The practice’s proximity to Route 255 significantly increases access-to-care, not only for Bethalto residents, but for families in surrounding towns. David Marchant, regional practice administrator for BJC Medical Group, emphasized the importance of this initiative.
“Strategic analysis shows that this area is vastly underserved for primary care,” Marchant said. “The enhancements to this platform will not only provide immediate benefits to the community, it will improve our ability to recruit new physicians, ensuring we can meet our patients’ needs now and into the future. Simply stated, more patients are going to have timely access to the health care they need.”
Bethalto Mayor Alan Winslow said that the village is “very excited” about the new facility.
“We have seen steady improvements in the numbers of new housing permits along with a recent influx of new senior residents due to the opening of two assisted living communities,” Winslow said when the project was announced. “We are pleased that BJC HealthCare’s quality medical care is now so easily accessible to our growing community.”
PHOTO: Dr. Craig Harms cuts the ribbon on the new BJC Medical Group office building in Bethalto on Aug. 22, surrounded by the staff of Family Physicians of Bethalto, Alton Memorial Convenient Care at Bethalto and the Network Reference Lab.