The Brothers of Mercy campus is adding primary care and aging research services.
Brothers of Mercy is adding primary care and research to its senior living campus in Clarence with both Highgate Medical Group P.C. and the University at Buffalo taking space in a former assisted living facility onsite.
The two organizations be on the first floor north wing of a 60,000-square-foot building left vacant when Sacred Heart Home moved into a larger $21 million facility in 2021 on the 126-acre campus.
Brothers of Mercy CEO Peter Eimer said the partnerships continue the expansion of services for residents.
“Campuses like ours have to keep up. … That’s why we’re doing this,” he said. “We’re getting ahead of the game in terms of new plans, new programs, and new ideas in aging. … It is unique and that’s what we want to be.”
The campus has seen $50 million in additions over the past five years. With an operating budget of nearly $39 million and a staff of about 600, the campus serves more than 550 residents through independent apartments, assisted living and memory care, inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation as well as a 240-bed skilled nursing and rehab facility, companion care and a hospice unit operated in collaboration with Buffalo Hospice.
The building has been renamed the Russell Salvatore Center in recognition of a $300,000 gift from the philanthropist/restauranteur. Additional funding came from the Mother Cabrini Health Foundation, the James H. Cummings Foundation, the Margaret L. Wendt Foundation, the Luke and Anthony Santiago Fund, and the Daniel C. and Beatrice M. Fisher Fund.
The first phase of development for the Russell Salvatore Center, a $1 million project, will include the development of a 1,200-square-foot primary care clinic for Highgate Medical along with a 1,400-square-foot geriatric services program to be called the UB Aging Resilience and Research Center.
The center will focus on the biology of aging and frailty as well as resilience, or what allows some older adults to bounce back more quickly from injuries or illnesses, said Nikhil Satchidanand, director of the center and assistant professor of geriatrics and palliative medicine at UB’s Jacobs School of Medicine & Biomedical Sciences.
“Then (it’s) taking that information to design community-based, home-based, and clinic-based interventions,” he said. “We want to really bring the university expertise that we have into the community.”
While Brothers of Mercy residents will be the main focus, the programs will be open to the larger community as well. The building will also house a chiropractic care center and a retail pharmacy.
Dr. David Pawlowski, the managing partner at Highgate Medical, said the site will serve as a satellite clinic but won’t take the place of its existing practice sites in Williamsville and West Amherst.
While the model isn’t appropriate for all nursing homes, in this case, Brothers of Mercy has enough residents all along the continuum of care who won’t have to travel to see their doctor if they’re enrolled with Highgate Medical.
“It’s really to have doctoring and medical care on campus,” he said. “We think the model of care has changed, and we want to take care of you in the place you’re at.”
Brothers is working with Picone Construction Corp., with work to begin this spring and anticipated completion by early fall.