Tidewell Hospice to break ground on Lakewood Ranch house by March 2017

An artist’s rendering of the Tidewell Hospice house planned for Lakewood Ranch.
An artist’s rendering of the Tidewell Hospice house planned for Lakewood Ranch.

Tidewell Hospice, which paid $1.25 million for 2.45 acres at Lakewood Ranch a year ago, plans to break ground on a new 12-bed, 14,180-square-foot hospice facility by March 2017.

The facility is expected to open in early 2018, said Timothy Wolfrum, Tidewell’s communications director.

“We knew the land would be in demand and we thought we should jump on it, even though we weren’t ready to build,” Wolfrum said of the building site on Rangeland Parkway near Lakewood Ranch Boulevard.

Tidewell used the year since buying the land for design and fundraising.

The planned hospice facility would be built near Intercoastal Medical Group and The Sheridan at Lakewood Ranch, a senior assisted living and memory care facility.

Although the hospice house will open with 12 beds, the facility offers the capacity for expansion to 24 beds, Wolfrum said.

Tidewell Hospice had a six-bed facility in Lakewood Ranch Medical Center from 2012-15. Hospice had to vacate that space because the medical center needed it for surgical patient care rooms.

The Lakewood Ranch facility will be Tidewell’s third in Manatee County. It also has hospice houses at 3355 26th St. W. in Bradenton, and at 4151 37th St. E. in Ellenton.

“Since the hospice unit closed in 2015, patients from the Lakewood Ranch area have no longer had family members close by. Too often, loved ones were not able to be there at the end of life. The closing of our unit in the medical center created the opportunity for Tidewell to build a new facility to serve the community for the long term,” Tidewell President/CEO Gerry Radford said in a statement.

Tidewell’s census in Manatee County increased by nearly 20 percent between 2012 and 2015. Most recently, Tidewell provided care to 2,683 Manatee County residents and 478 Lakewood Ranch-area residents, Radford said.

Tidewell has its administrative office at 6310 Capital Drive, Suite 100, Lakewood Ranch.

“We look forward to working with our partners throughout the Lakewood Ranch community to make this hospice house a reality. Tidewell has started a capital campaign to raise the funds necessary to build and support the new hospice house and associated equipment and services,” Radford said. “It is our plan to raise $5 million for construction and operation of the new hospice house. We hope to raise an additional $2 million that will serve as a permanent endowment to fund charity care, family support services and future operation of all eight Tidewell Hospice houses.”

Tidewell also has hospice houses in Sarasota, DeSoto and Charlotte counties.

Tidewell admits patients with a prognosis of six months or less, including AIDS, renal failure, ALS, end-stage Alzheimer’scancer, and heart and lung disease, according to its website.

For more information, visit the Tidewell Hospice website.

James A. Jones Jr.: 941-745-7053, @jajones1