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Award-winning Medical Group reopens Team Patrick clinic

Brig. Gen. Anthony Cotton, 45th Space Wing commander, Col. Allison Bowden, 45th Medical Group commander, Chief Master Sgt. Calvin Williams, 45th Space Wing Command Chief, and other dignitaries cut the ribbon to commemorate the  completion of theMedical Group’s $20.7 million renovation project Feb. 9, 2012, at Patrick Air Force Base, Fla. “I want to thank all our beneficiaries who were so patient and understanding of the noise and  space constraints,” said Colonel Bowden. “We now have a facility that enables better patient fl ow and patients no longer have to go to separate buildings to receive the services they need. We have a one-stop shop.” (U.S. Air Force photo/Matthew Jurgens)

Brig. Gen. Anthony Cotton, 45th Space Wing commander, Col. Allison Bowden, 45th Medical Group commander, Chief Master Sgt. Calvin Williams, 45th Space Wing Command Chief, and other dignitaries cut the ribbon to commemorate the completion of theMedical Group’s $20.7 million renovation project Feb. 9, 2012, at Patrick Air Force Base, Fla. “I want to thank all our beneficiaries who were so patient and understanding of the noise and space constraints,” said Colonel Bowden. “We now have a facility that enables better patient fl ow and patients no longer have to go to separate buildings to receive the services they need. We have a one-stop shop.” (U.S. Air Force photo/Matthew Jurgens)

PATRICK AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- Team Patrick and visiting dignitaries cut the ribbon Feb. 9 to commemorate the completion of the 45th Medical Group's extensive renovation project.

The 45th Medical Group officially opened its 74,000-square-foot clinic that has been undergoing renovation and modernization since last August, thanks to $20.7 million in federal "stimulus" funding through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The second largest ARRA project in Brevard County was awarded to contractor Heery International in June 2009.

The cost included about $4.5 million in initial outfitting, which included new medical equipment, furniture and artwork.

The building, which was constructed in the mid-1960s as a 75-bed inpatient medical facility, was converted later to an outpatient clinic. The renovation does not add any square footage, but it allows staff and patients to better utilize 30 percent of the building.

"So now we have a facility that will meet the needs of our nearly 15,000 beneficiaries," Brig. Gen. Anthony Cotton, 45th Space Wing commander. "Our appointments, that averaged over 300 in January, will have a facility with a 30 percent increase in space, state-of-the-art waiting areas, and modern patient systems as well as new building infrastructure making it more reliable and efficient."

The renovation project was completed in January, after four major construction phases.

The project at its height employed more than 100 workers - most of whom were from the local area. Many local companies were instrumental in the project. Local artists created some of the artwork.

"I want to thank all our beneficiaries who were so patient and understanding of the noise and space constraints," said Colonel Allison Bowden, 45th Medical Group commander. "We now have a facility that enables better patient flow and patients no longer have to go to separate buildings to receive the services they need. We have a one-stop shop."

She said the modernization of the clinic makes it easier and quicker for patients. As they come in, there is no lengthy wait to check in; they can do so easily with a touchscreen device at the entrance.

Colonel Bowden said she never received any complaints from patients during construction.

"This is a testament to the trust and partnership between our staff and our patients," she said.

Despite undergoing major renovation, the 45th Medical Group was recently recognized as the number one Patient Centered Medical Home in the entire Air Force Medical Service, of 75 clinics, for 2011. Winners are selected based on clinic impact in key areas of Patient Centered Medical Home care delivery such as patient continuity, patient satisfaction and patient outcome measures.

The Medical Group also received recently "best-ever" accolades for two inspections - Health Services Inspection and Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care. That doesn't mean the clinic's care won't continue to improve, said Colonel Bowden.

"Hold on, you haven't seen anything yet," she said. "We are committed to promote and deliver world-class care, better care, ready care, best value, safe care, and evidence-based quality care."