Eden Hill medical center waiting for construction go-ahead

Pictured is the site plan for the Eden Hill Medical Center, with the proposed Center at Eden Hill sub-acute rehabilitation facilty set for Area 2. (Submitted photo/Eden Hill Medical)

Pictured is the site plan for the Eden Hill Medical Center, with the proposed Center at Eden Hill sub-acute rehabilitation facilty set for Area 2. (Submitted photo/Eden Hill Medical)

DOVER — The wait for final confirmation to move ahead with constructing a short-term rehabilitation center will continue, pending an appeal before the Delaware Supreme Court.

The court was scheduled to hear oral arguments pro and con for building the Center at Eden Hill on Wednesday.

However, backers said a deputy attorney general requested a continuance for personal reasons on that day.

The hearing has not been rescheduled yet, but Center at Eden Hill CEO Sean Mace Eden said an answer will come within 90 days of oral arguments, if not sooner.

Genesis Healthcare is appealing a Superior Court Judge’s affirmation of a Delaware Health Resources Board approval of Eden Hill’s proposed sub-acute rehabilitation facility designed to provide short-term care for patients leaving the hospital and still needing services.

Genesis Healthcare earlier maintained there are enough skilled care facilities to serve the public already in Kent County, along with a surplus of nursing home beds, among other points.

Mr. Mace said the projected 80- to 100-bed facility will offer sub-acute care including physical, occupational and speech therapy.

Other key benefits are rehabilitation “quality care close to home” and the “design is all private rooms with bathrooms.”

The project will cost about $20 million to construct, and cover roughly 65,000 to 70,000 square feet, Mr. Mace said.

It will be situated to the northeast of Eden Hill Medical Center’s current facility at 200 Banning St.

“I’m still very confident that we will win approval and move forward with the project,” Mr. Mace said. “The impact to the community will be like no other facility in Kent County.”

Mr. Mace said the facility will follow a traditional neighborhood design that must be approved by the city of Dover and flow with the surrounding residential area, along with existing Eden Hill Medical Center structures.

With the current master plan in place and the Eden Hill Medical Center operational, the entire parcel has all utilities in place, along with stormwater management capacity, Mr. Mace said.

Center at Eden Hill is backed by 34 investors, including 24 physicians. Also involved are a variety of business/health-care administrators, business owners and those with management, legal and nursing backgrounds, Mr. Mace said earlier.

The timeline unfolds

As earlier reported, the Eden Hill project’s Certificate of Public Review Report was submitted on Jan. 25, 2013, for a new 80-to 100-bed skilled nursing facility with an anticipated average length of stay for patients of 21 days, court papers said.

Eden Hill received a Sept. 13, 2013, letter from the DHRB that the Certificate of Public Review had been granted on Sept. 13, 2013, the court said.

On Sept. 23, 2013, Genesis filed a motion for reconsideration.

The Genesis motion was considered by the DHRB at its Oct. 24, 2013, meeting and it was denied, according to court papers. Genesis followed by filing an instant appeal in Superior Court on Nov. 25, 2013.

Judge M. Jane Brady was assigned the case on April 16, 2014, with a record of the case coming on July 9, 2014, according to papers.

The court began considering the case after supplemental briefs were filed by both parties on Dec. 3, 2014, papers said.

Veritas Management Group based in Colorado Springs, Colo., was slated to oversee the daily facilities and rehabilitation operations, according to the original plans.

This is a rendering of what the proposed Center at Eden Hill sub-acute rehabilitation facilty in Dover will look like upon completion.

This is a rendering of what the proposed Center at Eden Hill sub-acute rehabilitation facilty in Dover will look like upon completion.

Reach staff writer Craig Anderson at canderson@newszap.com

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