WEDC investment to help fund new construction of a new primary and specialty care clinic and renovation of Indianhead Medical Center building

MADISON, WI. DEC. 12, 2019 – The City of Shell Lake is receiving a $250,000 state grant to help fund the remodeling of the Indianhead Medical Center (IMC) hospital and the renovation of the attached Shell Lake Clinic located in downtown Shell Lake.

Indianhead Medical Center (IMC) is a privately-owned 25-bed critical access hospital with a 24-hour emergency room and is accredited by the Joint Commission. The center has aided the community since it opened in 1947, and today offers services such as medical testing, consultation and rehabilitation, general surgery, urology, cardiology, podiatry, orthopedics, radiology and more.

The Community Development Investment Grant from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) will support the construction of a new 9,000-square-foot clinic building, an ambulance garage, a new sidewalk and street paving including a new parking lot, and the remodeling of the current emergency room and operating rooms. This project will be consolidating government and medical services at one central location in the heart of Shell Lake and is expected to be completed by June of 2020.

“This project will not only improve medical services for the people of Shell Lake, but it will also create jobs, attracting more people to work and live in the area,” said Missy Hughes, secretary and CEO of WEDC, the state’s leading economic development corporation. “This grant will help foster economic health, quality of life and sense of community in Shell Lake.”

The newly renovated Shell Lake Clinic will be a one-story structure with an enclosed link that connects it to the current hospital, creating easy access to the remodeled emergency department and operating rooms. These areas have not been updated since the facility was constructed in 1970.

Construction of the new ambulance garage will give access to a hallway leading right to the newly remodeled ER in the front of the hospital, allowing for safer, more efficient care for incoming patients. Additionally, the modernized operating rooms will help the center recruit and retain general and orthopedic surgeons.

“The cooperation among IMC, Washburn County and the City of Shell Lake was an excellent example of local and state government and private industry working together toward a common

goal,” said Shell Lake City Administrator Andrew Eiche. “The commitment displayed by the IMC ownership to the success of the project was phenomenal. The critical importance of IMC’s new clinic, pharmacy and helicopter pad to Shell Lake and surrounding area residents cannot be overstated. Shell Lake also thanks WEDC for recognizing the importance of this project to our community.”

With about 90 employees, IMC is one of the largest employers in Shell Lake and Washburn County. The clinic construction is expected to add five full-time employees to assist the surgical specialists that will practice at the new facility. The city also stated that it anticipates people will move to Shell Lake for jobs related to the new government center, which when complete will house about 70 jobs. The center provides free transportation to the clinic and hospital for patients’ convenience.

“I am thrilled WEDC is awarding this grant to the City of Shell Lake,” said state Sen. Janet Bewley. “Maintaining access to high-quality health care services is one of the most pressing needs in our rural communities. This is great news in terms of both the local economy and improving people’s health.”

“Critical access hospitals play a vital role in many rural areas in our state, and this grant will help make sure this service stays here,” said state Rep. Romaine Quinn. “I’m very proud of all of our rural health providers and am proud of IMC for their hard work.”

WEDC’s Community Development Investment Grant Program supports community development and redevelopment efforts, primarily in downtown areas. The matching grants are awarded based on the ability of applicants to demonstrate the economic impact of the proposed project, including public and private partnership development, financial need and use of sustainable downtown development practices.

Since the program’s inception in 2013, WEDC has awarded more than $24 million in Community Development Investment Grants to 101 communities for projects expected to generate more than $500 million in capital investments statewide.