About the Hillsboro Specialty Clinics and Education Center

   Hillsboro Specialty Clinics and Education Center is owned by Hillsboro Area Health System, which is the parent organization of Hillsboro Area Hospital, Hillsboro Area Health Services, Inc. and Hillsboro Area Health Foundation. The Hillsboro Area Health System board of directors is comprised of volunteers who have experience on the hospital board and represent the communities of Montgomery County.

   Three years ago, area residents met in a town hall meeting environment and discussed the future of healthcare in Montgomery County. The consensus was that new structures needed to be built. One was for health training and education. The hospital’s vision to collaborate and partner with others had been successful in bringing Lincoln Land Community College to Hillsboro for the licensed practical nurse and certified nursing assistant program, which had expanded to include the second year of registered nursing classes. More space was needed.

   In addition, meeting participants expressed a need for evening health education classes to teach area residents how to lead healthier lifestyles. The outcome of these focused discussions was that space should be built for health training/community education classrooms linked through technology to the world.

   The benefits of access to specialized healthcare was also discussed at these town hall meetings. It was determined that improving the facilities for physician specialists to provide outpatient services to the community would be a worthwhile investment. As a result, Hillsboro Specialty Clinics, a state-of-the-art facility, was built to attract and retain specialists to Hillsboro so that area residents do not have to travel elsewhere to access specialty healthcare.

   For the Education Center, a grant was obtained with the support of Illinois State Senator Deanna Demuzio and State Representative Gary Hannig to finance $750,000 of the cost of the new classrooms. Hillsboro Area Health System paid for the Hillsboro Specialty Clinics building from its own reserves.

Environmentally Responsible ‘Green’ Building

   Hillsboro Area Hospital's mission to "positively affect the health and welfare of the communities we serve" is reflected in the newly constructed Hillsboro Specialty Clinics and Education Center as well as the hospital's new emergency and imaging departments.

   In planning the building project, the hospital and Hillsboro Area Health System chose to meet the standards required for Gold Level LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification. These standards provide for environmentally sustainable construction resulting in a building which is made of earth-friendly materials and uses less energy to operate.

   The LEED rating system, which defines a "green" building, has several core areas, including:

• Water efficiency, by reducing consumption and improving water quality

• Energy & atmosphere, utilizing high-efficiency windows, insulation, ceilings and floors

• Materials & resources, using rapidly renewable and natural or recycled materials

   Steps we have taken to meet prerequisites for Gold Level LEED certification include:

• Pollution prevention: Concrete, instead of asphalt, was used where possible to decrease heat, and thus reduce air pollutants generated by air conditioning. Alternative transportation is encouraged with installation of bike racks, and employee showers are available for those choosing to bicycle to work.

• Water efficiency: Low flow faucets, dual flush toilets and low flow urinals have been installed to reduce water consumption.

• Energy & atmosphere: A computerized energy model has been designed to optimize and monitor energy performance.

• Materials & resources: Attention was paid to buying products containing recycled materials, including concrete, rebar, steel, casework and drywall. The new registration desk is made of "paper stone," which is made from recycled paper. Carpets and upholstery have recycled fibers.

• Indoor environmental quality: Air ducts were sealed throughout construction to prevent contamination of ventilation systems. Low VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds) were used within the building to improve air quality and reduce harmful compounds often found in construction materials. Overhead lighting is controlled by sensors to turn lights off when not in use and to allow task lighting for those in need of intensified lighting.

   This project demonstrates our dedication to build an innovative, environmentally responsible and resource efficient facility which reduces the overall impact on human health and the natural environment.