Armed with a five-year, $5 billion development pipeline, it is clear that developer Mainstreet is betting big on its vision to transform the traditional post-acute skilled nursing facilities of days past. But this quest is not one the company is undertaking alone.
The Carmel, Ind.-based Mainstreet has entrusted few operating partners with carrying out its mission to develop what it has dubbed its Next Generation properties, which provide transitional short-term rehabilitation services in an setting more resemblant of a resort than the generally perceived notion of a nursing home.
Companies such as Genesis HealthCare, and The Ensign Group (NASDAQ: ENSG) are just two of Mainstreet’s existing operating partners on what the company has dubbed “health care resorts,” many of which are either already open or under development in various places across the U.S.
In June, Mainstreet kicked off one of its newest partnerships with Symphony Post-Acute Network following the grand opening of the latest Next Generation property in Crown Point, Ind.
“One of the great things about the partnership with Symphony is they’re already in other states as well, and so they have a pulse on those markets,” said Scott Higgs, senior vice president of finance at Mainstreet, who sat down with SHN for an interview at the Symphony of Crown Point grand opening event.
Based in Lincolnwood, Ill., a northern suburb 10 miles from Chicago’s downtown Loop, 18 of Symphony’s 30 facilities are located in the Chicagoland area, with six additional locations in Rockford, Central and Southern Illinois. The company also operates two facilities in Mesa, Ariz., one in Glendale, Wis.
Symphony of Crown Point signals the company’s first entry into Indiana, a footprint that will be expanded following two similar projects currently under development that will open later this year or early next in Dyer and Chesterton.
Lobbies, lounges and luxury
Like its other Next Generation predecessors, Symphony of Crown Point boasts hospitality-oriented care seamlessly integrated throughout the building’s 66,598-square-feet.
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Aside from the facility’s 100 beds, amenities include a therapy gym, an outdoor rehabilitation courtyard, a spa, movie theater, and game room equipped with a flatscreen television, armchairs and a couch where residents can congregate with family members and each other.
Upon entry, guests are first welcomed into Symphony of Crown Point via the facility’s luxuriously appointed lobby, where visitors may purchase Starbucks coffee and other treats from the cafe, or simply gather for conversation beside a working fireplace that separates the lobby from a bar and lounge area.
The second floor houses two hallways of suites bisected by an additional dining venue that features its own open kitchen replete with table and counter seating.
These amenities embody what Mainstreet beholds as the future of post-acute care, and not without reason.
“The average age of a skilled nursing facility is 40-years-old across the country and we’ve done some social research that has basically said that somewhere between 85% and 90% of the Baby Boomer generation has said that they will not go to the current facilities,” said Higgs. “And those same folks have said that if there is a hotel-like amenity style facility they would go. That is a big part of it.”
A “game-changing” facility
Representing a total community investment of $16 million, Symphony of Crown Point created 360 construction jobs since its groundbreaking in May 2014 and 100 permanent jobs at the property itself.
The impact of the investment, however, far exceeds its monetary value, according to Crown Point Mayor Dave Uran.
“Anyone who makes an investment like this joins our family of 28,000, and you’re a big part of this community moving into the next chapter of our city,” said Mayor Uran during his remarks at the grand opening event.
It is possible that many of those patients may come from Franciscan St. Anthony Health, a 411 bed hospital whose campus is conveniently situated across the street from Symphony of Crown Point.
Franciscan, which happens to be an Accountable Care Organization, looks to be a promising referral source for the Symphony and Mainstreet as operations get underway.
“We’ve had conversations with their executives and we’ve chosen their medical group as our medical directors of the [Crown Point] facility,” said Tim Fields, president of operations at Symphony, in an interview with SHN.
Franciscan has physicians and Advanced Practice Nurses that will be rounding in Symphony of Crown Point multiple times a week to help manage patients’ changing conditions, Fields added.
“So a patient could be seen by a physician or nurse practitioner multiple times a week to prevent them from going back to the hospital—to help them make sure they’re progressing through their therapy and getting better to go home,” he said.
The facility is also looking to partner with Franciscan’s home health company as a way to “hand-off” patients to them, Fields said, while also being able to manage said patients through the continuum.
“This is a game-changer,” said Mayor Uran. “This is something that shows the traditional care coming together with new technology and how we treat patients and make them feel welcome here.”
‘The beginning of a beautiful friendship’
Just as the Crown Point property is Symphony’s first entrance into Indiana, it is also the first facility the company will operate that incorporates this new era of skilled nursing design throughout the entire building.
A number of Symphony’s facilities embrace a more traditional model of post-acute care, where such an environment with the amenities, decor and clinical programming that “really caters” to that transitional care patient may exist in a floor or a wing of one of its buildings, said Fields.
“But what makes this facility so unique and why we love the partnership with Mainstreet is because the whole facility is dedicated to transitional care,” Fields said. “We take the amenities and the clinical care aspects of what we’re doing and it really is the next generation for tomorrow’s seniors.”
The relationship between the two companies has been in incubation for a while and has plans to expand the partnership to other markets, including Symphony’s area of operations in Arizona and Wisconsin.
Likening the partnership with Symphony to Humphrey Bogart’s iconic line in the 1942 film “Casablanca,” Higgs said the kick-off initiated by the opening of Crown Point signals “the beginning of a beautiful friendship.”
“It’s pretty close to that,” Higgs said. “We’ve got several more in the pipeline with Symphony and a few more that are under construction with them. We’re pretty excited about the partnership.”
Written by Jason Oliva