ESCANABA – The FastCare retail health clinic currently operated by Marquette General Health System will close temporarily later this month during a transition in operations.
The FastCare clinic will close on Friday, April 30 and reopen under the direction of Bellin Health in June.
FastCare, anchored in the Shopko store at 2530 First Avenue North in Escanaba, opened in August 2008.
“The FastCare clinic is a valued option in the Upper Peninsula’s quest for quality, affordable health care,” said Peggy Erickson, Marquette General regional director of operations. “Although operating the FastCare clinic no longer is within our overall plan, we are pleased that Bellin Health and Shopko will continue to provide this valuable resource to Escanaba and the surrounding communities.”
The continued availability of FastCare is of utmost importance for the overall well-being of the community, said Ken Berndt, director of FastCare development at Bellin.
“At $52 per visit, FastCare provides an affordable entryway into the health care system in the Escanaba area,” Berndt said. “It effectively ensures a continuity of care for patients at local Bellin Health facilities or at any of the other local health care providers. It’s a much-needed resource in this area and will be a regular fixture in this community for a long time.”
Shopko’s vice president of Pharmacy, Greg Ahmann, shared similar thoughts.
“We’ve had a good working relationship with Marquette General for FastCare operations and they remain a valued partner in the ongoing challenge to provide top-quality, affordable health care to members of the Escanaba and Upper Peninsula communities,” Ahmann said. “Shopko remains committed to our FastCare clinics and fully supports Bellin Health’s operation of the clinic located in our First Avenue North store.”
Area residents are likely quite familiar with Bellin facilities.
The Green Bay-based health system has served the people of Northeast Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula for more than 100 years. In 2007, eight independent physicians from Iron Mountain, Kingsford and Norway joined the health system to form Bellin Health U.P. Primary Care.
Bellin Health System established the FastCare brand of retail health clinics in 2006. Bellin is an integrated health care delivery system in Green Bay, Wis., that was founded in 1907. Bellin operates five FastCare clinics in Northeast Wisconsin and has partnered with 19 other health systems to establish another 28 FastCare operations in Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin, and West Virginia.
Shopko Stores Operating Co., LLC is an affiliate of Sun Capital Partners, Inc., a leading private investment firm focused on leverage buyouts, equity, debt, and other investments in market-leading companies that can benefit from its in-house operating professionals and experience. Shopko is a $2 billion retailer of quality goods and services headquartered in Green Bay, Wis., with stores located in 13 states throughout the Midwest, Mountain and Pacific Northwest regions. Retail formats include 136 Shopko stores, providing quality name-brand merchandise, great values, pharmacy and optical services in small to mid-sized cities and 5 Shopko Express Rx stores, a convenient neighborhood drugstore concept. For more information, please visit www.shopko.com.
About Marquette General
Marquette General Health System, based in Marquette, Mich., comprises Marquette General Hospital, a 315-bed Regional Medical Center, clinics and offices in 13 communities and an assisted living facility. MGHS employs approximately 2,500 people throughout Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and northeastern Wisconsin. A teaching hospital with a medical staff of more than 200 doctors in 64 specialties and subspecialties, Marquette General is also a Level II Trauma Center and a 100 Top Cardiovascular Hospital 2006-09. Comprehensive services include cardiac care, cancer care, neurosciences, rehabilitation, behavioral health, imaging, vascular services, surgery including bariatrics, women’s and children’s services and home health and hospice. Marquette General is home to the regional NICU and is a recognized leader in telehealth technology.