LOCKPORT, N.Y. — Catholic Health broke ground on its Lockport Memorial Hospital on Tuesday.
It will be right behind the Hall Apple Farm at 6100 Ruhlmann Road.
Now the whole reason they're going to be building it is because the only hospital in Lockport -- which is the Eastern Niagara Hospital -- is closing in 18 months.
So this new one will help them to continue providing care in the area when it opens in 2023.
"We have bank debt and the hospital property was collateral for that debt so we will no longer be able to maintain the facility 18 months from now," said Eastern Niagara Hospital president and CEO Anne McCaffery.
That meant the nearest hospital for residents in the area would be 25 to 30 minutes away.
So, McCaffery got in touch with Catholic Health to fix that.
They came up with Lockport Memorial, a 60,000 square foot building -- which will be an extension of Catholic Health's Mount St. Mary's Hospital -- and something called a "neighborhood hospital."
"There will be primary services here that meet the acute needs of the community but they won't duplicate services that could be made at other health systems across Western New York," said Catholic Health's president and CEO Mark Sullivan.
Lockport Memorial will include emergency, inpatient, imaging and lab services -- as well as primary care, women's health and specialty medical practices.
While staffing has continued to be an issue for most employers lately, Sullivan says a new hospital should also help to draw in more nurses.
According to him, Catholic Health has hired 1,200 new staff year to date.
"We've had 315 nurses come in. Just in the last two weeks, we've had over 25 nurses hired at Catholic Health ever since we ended the labor strike at Mercy. So we have contractors out around the country working to recruit people to Western New York. Hospitals like this are a magnet that want to do something innovative so we continue to recruit 24/7," Sullivan said.
The Lockport Memorial Hospital is set to open in the spring of 2023.