Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Ottawa to host OSF town hall meeting on May 15

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The Ottawa City Council will host a meeting Wednesday with OSF HealthCare officials to discuss plans for health care in Ottawa moving forward.

The meeting is set for 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 15, at Central Intermediate School, 711 E. McKinley Road.

Before a capacity crowd May 7 at its Council Chambers, the Ottawa City Council chose to table voting on a resolution of opposition to OSF HealthCare’s plan for Saint Elizabeth Medical Center, electing to readdress the issue after a meeting with OSF officials.

Mayor Robb Hasty said the plan Wednesday is for him to provide some opening remarks, OSF to speak to some questions specifically from the city, the public to comment for no longer than an hour, OSF to respond to the public, then the council and OSF to make closing statements.

OSF, which recently reopened the Peru hospital in April, has said its plans are to build a $126 million facility with a 26-bed inpatient behavioral health unit, 12 medical/surgical beds and a surgery suite, emergency services, diagnostic imaging and outpatient care services in Ottawa, according to its initial news release.

Because of its central location, OSF St. Elizabeth-Peru will serve as the hub hospital within the Interstate 80 corridor and support a full range of inpatient and outpatient services, the hospital said. This includes 45 medical/surgical beds, eight intensive care unit rooms, 11 obstetric rooms to support a regional birthing center, surgery and procedure rooms, emergency services, diagnostic imaging and outpatient care services.

Primary and specialty care clinics, including cardiovascular care, general surgery and OB/GYN, will continue to provide services in Ottawa. OSF said it is committed to growing and expanding cancer care through the Fox River Cancer Center as part of the continuum/network with the OSF Cancer Institute in Peoria and the Patricia D. Pepe Center for Cancer Care at OSF St. Anthony Medical Center in Rockford.

Ottawa Commissioner Tom Ganiere has been critical of OSF’s plans, saying they reduce services in Ottawa and consolidate services regionally. Ganiere said May 7 he drew the line at having the available services be less than what its citizens have become accustomed.

OSF Saint Elizabeth President Dawn Trompeter and CEO of OSF HealthCare’s Western Region August Querciagrossa have cited the outdated condition of Ottawa’s building and making services available to more people in the region.

The La Salle County Board is expected to consider a resolution on the future of health care in Ottawa, but tabled the item until after the city’s town hall meeting.

Want to go/watch?

What: Town hall meeting with OSF officials

Where: Central School, 711 E. McKinley Road, Ottawa

Watch from home: Go to https://cityofottawa.org/ and click on live streaming button on left side of the page.

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