Health Care

$22 million health care facility planned for Bluffton

This site map shows the location of a planned St. Joseph's/Candler medical campus within Bluffton’s Buckwalter Place development.
This site map shows the location of a planned St. Joseph's/Candler medical campus within Bluffton’s Buckwalter Place development.

Looking for a one-stop medical shop in Bluffton?

A new medical campus with precisely that aim is being planned for the Buckwalter Place development.

Savannah-based health care provider St. Joseph’s/Candler is planning to build a $22 million, 40,000-square-foot facility that will provide patients with services including primary care, physical therapy, wound care, X-ray and MRI imaging, as well as radiation and oncology treatment, according to the firm’s president, Paul Hinchey.

St. Joseph’s/Candler spokesman Scott Larson said recently the facility will include technology to assist with radiation treatment planning, a service cancer patients must currently travel to Savannah to receive.

Hinchey said a “mini-hospital” with emergency services may eventually become part of plans for the facility.

“We knew we needed some type of medical campus in our area where people can go to a single location for their health care,” Hinchey said. “Buckwalter (Place) is a great location for a campus like that — it’s well known, it’s easy to get to, it has the space we need.”

Existing St. Joseph’s/Candler facilities in Bluffton and Okatie will be relocated to the new campus, but the company’s operations on Hilton Head Island will remain in place.

The new St. Joseph’s/Candler facility is planned to be built in two phases on a four-acre parcel directly across Buckwalter Place Boulevard from the Publix grocery store.

Hinchey said elements of the campus require approval from the state prior to construction. He said he expects that approval process to take about six months.

Once ground breaks on the first phase of the campus, the construction time frame is about a year and a half, Hinchey said.

Larson said the campus is expected to employ 63 people, with an annual total payroll of about $6.6 million.

Hinchey said the project represents “major employer coming into Bluffton and making a major commitment.”

The site is already the headquarters of eviCore, a managed health care benefits firm recently sold to St. Louis-based Express Scripts Holdong Co. for $3.6 billion.

A Kroger Marketplace grocery store surrounded by new retail shops and residences are planned at the site, which currently includes businesses such as the Publix and a brewery.

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