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Sears

Saratoga Hospital will move some hospital services to the vacant Sears store at Wilton Mall, hospital officials announced Tuesday.

WILTON — Saratoga Hospital will lease more than 56,000 square feet at Wilton Mall — in the former Sears anchor store space — to free much-needed space for patient care on the main hospital campus, the hospital announced Tuesday.

The lease, with mall owner and operator Macerich, “reflects Saratoga Hospital’s long-term strategic plan to dedicate its Church Street campus to services that must be provided in a hospital setting — the only place where patients have 24/7 access to intensive and emergency care, constant monitoring, and a highly skilled medical team,” according to a hospital news release.

The information technology department and the health information system, which manages patient medical records, will be the first to move from the hospital campus to the mall space that was previously occupied by Sears. Other staff who are already working off-campus will also move there to consolidate office space, spokesman Peter Hopper said.

“As departments relocate, hospital space will be reconfigured to meet the desperate need for more inpatient rooms and services that require the capabilities only a hospital can provide,” the news release states.

“Like many hospitals that were built before cities grew around them, we are almost out of room on our hospital campus,” said Angelo Calbone, Saratoga Hospital president and CEO, in the release. “To best serve our growing community, we must find ways to reserve space at the hospital for care that simply can’t be provided anywhere else.

“Virtually every Saratoga Hospital facility-related decision reflects that priority,” he added.

“This innovative and strategic leasing arrangement is yet another example.”

In recent years, the hospital has moved outpatient services to campuses in Wilton and Malta.

The Wilton Mall space is across the street from Saratoga Hospital’s Wilton campus, which is home to primary and urgent care, medical imaging, eye care, breast health services, same-day surgery and other health care services that can be provided equally well in non-hospital environments.

Saratoga Hospital expects to move staff and services to the mall in phases.

Currently, work is underway to convert the first 10,000 to 20,000 square feet for offices for support staff and to determine the best use of the remaining space.

“One of the advantages of the mall location is that it gives us the room and flexibility we need in two key locations,” Calbone said.

“We can dedicate the hospital campus to critical, care-related services while meeting other needs at a convenient, easily accessible location.”

In Queensbury, through a partnership with Hudson Headwaters Health Network, Saratoga Hospital will be opening an urgent care center at the former Carl R’s restaurant site just off of Exit 18.

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