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Posted on Mon, Jan 28, 2013 : 5:56 a.m.

U-M Health System may expand West Ann Arbor Health Center

By Amy Biolchini

The University of Michigan Health System is considering expanding its West Ann Arbor Health Center at 4900 Jackson Road in Scio Township as part of an effort to ease congestion at its main hospital campus.

The health system has put a request for proposals to evaluate if expanding the center is a feasible business move, said Jeanne Rizzo, executive director of Ambulatory Care Services for UMHS.

The West Ann Arbor Health Center comprises about 6,131 square feet in a facility about four miles west of downtown Ann Arbor.

The center has 10 doctors on staff and provides general medicine services for adults and children, as well as OB/GYN services.

"We're in the process of going through... an RFP process to look at whether we would expand our West Ann Arbor site; but we're in the very beginning stages of that RFP process," Rizzo said.

Part of the health system's strategies and goals are to bring primary and secondary care closer to the homes of the patients they serve, Rizzo said — thus helping to alleviate some of the congestion problems at U-M's main hospital campus in Ann Arbor on East Medical Center Drive.

One such development the health system hopes will accomplish those goals is the Northville Health Center. In a partnership with a private developer, UMHS will lease a 100,000-square-foot two-story building that will be constructed just for them at the corner of Seven Mile and Haggerty roads in Northville Township.

The facility will be the first of its kind for UMHS in its offering of primary care as well as specialists in a number of disciplines. UMHS projects it will be staffed by 60 doctors.

The success of the Northville Health Center will be used to evaluate whether UMHS decides to expand the West Ann Arbor Health Center, among other projects, Rizzo said.

"There are other places that we are hopeful that we will be able to do some expanded services in the future," Rizzo said.


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Amy Biolchini covers Washtenaw County, health and environmental issues for AnnArbor.com. Reach her at (734) 623-2552, amybiolchini@annarbor.com or on Twitter.

Comments

James Staley

Mon, Jan 28, 2013 : 10:40 p.m.

For many years, I have been a patient at this location and it was so close to my Condo on Zeeb road and everyone is so wonderful and kind there. It does not matter how big the building is or what is done in the building, I think they just need more Male Doctors, at this time, they only have one like they have for many years and until they get another job or their wife get a promotion and the Male Doctor is gone, they either get another female Doctor in or they have the usualy one Male Doctor. Myself, I feel more confortable going to a male Doctor and I will wait until he and only him has a open time, I just do not like it when I am given to a nurse or a female Doctor that does not know me or anything about me. The Doctor that I see at the West Ann Arbor Clinic is a wonderful and kind man a Dr. Paul Tichenor, during the past 2 years I have had many new health problems and he has helped me so much and if I ever have a problem with the medication or with my medical condiction, he is just a phone call away and if I do not get him, I always get a call back from one of the wonderful nursing staff or someone before they close for the day. When I went to the Briarwood health care center I was waiting for days for a call back and sometimes, Never a return call. After many years of problems at the Briarwood location I transfered to the West Ann Arbor location and after about 16 years, I am still going even after moving to Bloomfield Hills last December. When you have the best of everything in one building from the Family Doctor on down why change to be closer to your home. The patients are the last to know about any changes about anything at the University of Michigan Medical Center I have been a patient with them for about 52 years and until I read about it in the Ann Arbor news no patients are never told about a change.

Nicholas Urfe

Mon, Jan 28, 2013 : 4:16 p.m.

Is this another tax exempt umich business?

Nicholas Urfe

Tue, Jan 29, 2013 : 5:22 p.m.

@Semperfi: Is there some reason the free market cannot provide, while paying their fair share of taxes? Is the free market broken? Has it failed? Or cannot it not compete against tax-free competitors, who are also subsidized with taxpayer funds?

SemperFi

Mon, Jan 28, 2013 : 7:40 p.m.

It's another example of UM providing needed services to everyone and jobs to tax-paying citizens.

Rick Stevens

Mon, Jan 28, 2013 : 3:33 p.m.

Amy - this is the experience with doctors in general, irrespective of health center, etc. Just a month ahead is actually fairly good in my experience. Unless the doctor is new and building up his or her practice they're very booked and will generally schedule 'routine' visits 1-2 months out. If it's an emergency they often will tell you to go to the ED ('ER') or be seen by someone else in their practice (who is less busy and often new) if the need is more routine.

Amy Biolchini

Mon, Jan 28, 2013 : 3:06 p.m.

This is purely anecdotal, but I know from my own experience and that of several others that getting an appointment at the West Ann Arbor Health Center is not easy: When I called recently they were scheduling a month in advance.