Avera Missouri River Health Center prepares to open

It was Feb. 21 of last year when over 300 people gathered at the Legion Building to celebrate the news that plans were underway for a new health center in Gettysburg. 

Now, not even two years later, the newly constructed Avera Missouri River Health Center will open its emergency department Monday, Dec. 14. 

Patients will move to the new inpatient facility that day, and the Avera Medical Group Gettysburg clinic will begin operations Dec. 17, with full facility functions starting Dec. 18.

Avera Missouri River Health Center is a $12 million, 21,800 square-foot facility that incorporates innovative design and technology. It will offer a seven-bed inpatient hospital unit, a clinic, a new leading-edge emergency services department, a surgical suite, radiology and imaging services and a new therapy gym. The gym includes extensive new technology and equipment and will provide wellness center options. 

Patient rooms are connected to Avera’s robust telemedicine program, Avera eCARE®. The facility has three private rooms, including an isolation patient room along with two semi-private rooms for a total capacity of seven patient beds.

“This exciting moment in Gettysburg health care is only possible because of the generous supporters who helped Avera fund a medical center that will serve many generations to come,” said Kristi Livermont, Administrator of Avera Missouri River Health Center. “As construction began, we sought more than $3 million to help fund this project. We surpassed that goal, thanks to many gifts, large and small, from individuals, families and businesses around our region.”

The campaign received a total of 1,134 gifts and raised more than $3,113,000. The death of Paul Nelson, a central South Dakota business man, spurred the final phase of the project. The Nelson family directed memorials to the Avera Missouri River Health Center building project, because they understood the importance of supporting local health care and their community. One of their clients, Lynn and Foster Friess, offered up to $125,000 in matching funds and donors joined them in support of the project to take advantage of that full matching amount.

The Gettysburg community is invited to a January 2021 virtual open house to view online photos and take part in video tours of the new medical center.

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