News

Aug 11, 2011

First Choice Breaks Ground on New Los Lunas Health Center


First Choice Community Healthcare broke ground on Thursday on a new 22,000 sq. ft.  Los Lunas Family and Community Health Center.  The new center will replace the old modular buildings that currently house the Los Lunas Health Center, and will more than double the capacity to serve patients in the region.

“This is going to be a clinic second to none anywhere in the country,” said First Choice Board Member Wilfred Otero, who represents the community served by the Los Lunas Health Center.  Mr. Otero and Board President Paul Luna donned hard hats and shovels, along with a group of other dignitaries, at the site of the new location on Don Pasqual behind the Village of Los Lunas Municipal Complex.

The groundbreaking ceremony brought together many of the organizations that are making the project possible.  Those in attendance included Los Lunas Mayor Robert Vialpando; Village Councilmen Richard Lovato, Gerard Saiz and Charles Griego; Village Administrator Peter Fernandez,  Economic Development Manager Ralph Mims;  and the Valencia County Chamber of Commerce President Andy Gomez.  Also in attendance were FCCH Staff and many Community Leaders.

“The quality of care we deliver here is the highest quality I have always wanted to deliver,” said Dr. Mark Evanko, Clinical Supervisor of the First Choice Los Lunas Family and Community Health Center.

Contractor Gerald Martin and architects Gregory Hicks and Associates expect to complete the building in 12 months, with patient visits anticipated to begin in September, 2012.  The center will feature 20 exam rooms and 10 dental chairs, and be modeled after the South Valley Health Commons. When fully staffed, the center will have the capacity to serve almost 15,000 patients per year. First Choice anticipates hiring eight new providers and additional support staff.

The Los Lunas and Belen Health Centers serve all of Valencia County and patients from southern Bernalillo County and parts of Socorro County.  First Choice is a community health center system that serves community members regardless of their ability to pay.  There are nine locations in Central NM.

Groundbreaking Photo Opp

Photo: From left: Grace Chavez, Vice Chairwoman of Board of First Choice Community Healthcare; Los Lunas Village Administrator Peter Fernandez; First Choice Board Chairman Paul Luna; Clinical Supervisor Dr. Mark Evanko; Village of Los Lunas Councilor Richard Lovato; Mayor Robert Vialpando; First Choice Board Member Wilfred Otero.