AS I SEE IT
By Neal A. ShipmanFarmer Editor
On Friday, June 22, McKenzie County residents were able to rejoice as a decades long dream of seeing a new healthcare complex finally became a reality as officials held a ribbon-cutting for the new $76 million state-of-the-art McKenzie County Healthcare Systems medical complex.
While the clinic and nursing home components of the new complex are already open and operating, the new hospital and emergency rooms will be fully functional on July 1. And when those last two components open their doors, it will usher in a new era of healthcare options for the residents of Watford City, all of McKenzie County and the surrounding area.
The dream was to combine all three of these critical healthcare units on a single campus and to bring a new level of care to area residents. But raising the millions of dollars needed to build a new complex was just one of the major hurdles that needed to be accomplished. It also required the hospital and nursing home boards to come together into one entity. It required the healthcare system to reach out and find strategic partners to help provide quality healthcare. And it required the residents of McKenzie County to understand how important it was that healthcare remain locally-owned and operated.
Fortunately all of those hurdles were overcome and that decadelong dream has finally become a reality. And with the opening of the McKenzie County Healthcare Systems new medical complex, a brand new era of healthcare is now available for the residents of McKenzie County.
Going forward, in addition to having more primary care physicians and specialists on staff, more emergency rooms, and specialized diagnostic equipment like CT scan and MRI equipment, McKenzie County residents will be able to receive a level of healthcare, both within the clinic, hospital and in the emergency department that will rival that found anywhere else in the region. And as more doctors and specialists become available in the future, the healthcare system will be able to offer obstetrics, outpatient surgery as well as many more services to this rapidly growing city and county.
The completion of the new healthcare complex, when coupled with the recently built Watford City High School and the Rough Rider Center, as well as all of the other improvements that have been made within the community, are a true testament of the vision and belief of Watford City and McKenzie County residents that together we can all help to grow and develop Watford City into a place that will be able to recruit new businesses and residents and be able to offer all of the services that they need.
Because of the commitment and vision of the people of McKenzie County, a new era of healthcare has just begun.