By Rachel Leber
STEVENS POINT, Wis. — The Marshfield Clinic’s new hospital and cancer care center in Stevens Point just opened its doors to patients for the first time on Feb. 13. Construction on the new 24,000-square-foot cancer care center began in May 2016, and the facility recently held a formal dedication, ribbon cutting and tours on March 7.
The Marshfield Clinic Cancer Center was built as an addition to the existing Marshfield Clinic Stevens Point Center. The main goal of the addition was to provide low-cost, quality health care in the Chippewa Valley, according to a statement.
The architecture firm on the project was RSP Architects of Minneapolis, and the general contractor was The Boldt Co. of Appleton, Wis., with locally based Point of Beginning serving as the civil engineer.
The new Marshfield Clinic has state-of-the-art equipment, which includes medical oncology and hematology services with private chemotherapy infusion suites, radiation oncology, a high-dose radiation brachytherapy suite and oncology pharmacy services. There is also a space for a social worker and a research coordinator at the clinic. Additionally, patients will have access to more than 50 cancer-related clinical trials through the National Cancer Institute research program and cancer care support services, according to Farrah Lemon, Marshfield Clinic project manager, facilities and property.
“The center is also the first in the system to pilot a cancer care financial navigator program,” Lemon added.
The overall layout of the space has been designed to provide clear pathways for patients, while respecting patient privacy. Staff work areas have been placed out of the patient pathways where patient interaction is not needed, while also being situated close to patient care areas where interaction is required. The interior of the clinic itself is very colorful, comfortable and overlooks the outdoor garden space. The larger space has been filled with planters and translucent panels that divide it into multiple smaller areas.
“Patients will often be here for long periods of time. It was important to us to help patients, guests and staff feel supported and positive by providing beautiful views, a comfortable commons area and soothing yet uplifting colors,” said Lemon.
Upon entering the Radiation Oncology area, which includes four exam rooms, a large consultation room, changing and sub-waiting areas, a linear accelerator, CT and HDR spaces, the paint finishes shift to a brighter color scheme, which gives the space its own character, according to Lemon. Other special design features in the clinic’s interiors focus on patient comfort and overall wellbeing. Some of these features include a library, a patient resource center, a spiritual room that overlooks a healing garden, a wig boutique with a changing room and a massage therapy area.
“[The design] had the patient in mind when we [planned] the facility, so it’s not just the structure, but also the function that we have built into this facility,” said Dr. Adedayo A. Onitilo, Marshfield Clinic Oncology/Hematology, Radiation Oncology and Palliative Medicine service line medical director.