By the end of the year, Clarke County Hospital plans to have construction on a multiple-phase renovation completed, modernizing and increasing overall patient care capabilities, including the addition of clinic space and behavioral health services. These renovations come on the heels of robust updates made between 2015 and 2017 that enabled the hospital to continue to meet an increasing community healthcare needs, serving them with a multi-wing, comprehensive medical center, including state of the art emergency services and integrated clinics. The Clarke County Hospital Foundation is actively fundraising to cover the final costs bringing these projects to a close.

clarke county hospital new construction updates

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The most recent round of construction includes numerous projects that, in part, were precipitated by the COVID pandemic and lessons learned from the Hospital’s quick response.

“We saw an increased need for patient care dedicated to respiratory and transmittal disease treatment {like COVID} as well as behavioral health services,” said Clarke County Hospital Communications Manager, Shannon Harris. “The spaces we’re expanding into will address that and more, making our hospital and healthcare services even more accessible.”

A Breakdown of the Projects:

The primary project is the addition of new clinic space below the primary care clinic which was completed in 2016. With this new clinic space, including more than a dozen new patient exam rooms and ground-floor access, hospital staff will have the dedicated space necessary to accommodate patients in the case of another pandemic scenario as well as space to address the rising demand in behavioral health care in rural Iowa. This area will be flexible enough to offer clinic and patient care services and provide spaces for counseling and consultations for families and individuals in crisis.

“We’re working hard to address the drastic inequity seen in rural mental healthcare access,” said Harris. “With provider-to-community ratios pushing 1-to-975 in Clarke County alone, we’re in an urgent situation.”

To illustrate the local need, State of Iowa provider-to-community ratio averages are 1-to-375.

An extension of the lower-level project includes increased access to the area and the addition of an employee parking lot to accommodate the hospital’s ever-growing staff. In recent years, the Hospital team has expanded from 135 employees to 250 and continues to grow.

Another important area of improvement that will impact patients and staff alike includes the expansion of the surgery area. With new pre- and post-op rooms offering improved privacy and an overall modernizing of the entire department, the expansions and updates within the surgery area will further help the hospital position itself for the future advancements in surgical patient care.

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Additional renovation projects include a much-needed update and expansion of the kitchen and dining facilities, enhancing the experience for patients, staff, and hospital guests. These enhancements include improved layout efficiencies, updated equipment, expansion of indoor and outdoor seating areas and an overall improvement to the design and functionality of the space.

Finally, on the second level, above the new dining areas, will be an addition of a patient sundeck. This update will open outdoor access from the hospital in-patient wing, offering quality of life amenities to patients and families on extended stays.

The overall cost of the 2023 construction at Clarke County Hospital came in at $12.8 million, with the Clarke County Hospital Foundation tasked with raising the final portion of the funds. Due to the incredible support of the community, the Foundation has already raised more than $510,000, leaving a final stretch effort of raising an additional $90,000 to complete the project.

“Over the past decade, including this campaign, the Hospital has invested more than $40 Million in healthcare and health-related services into our community,” said Clarke County Hospital Foundation and Transportation Coordinator, Tom Bahls. “That’s all without an increase or negative impact to the local tax levy.”

“It’s our goal to have that final $90,000 in funding in place before the end of the Summer so we can roll into Fall knowing we’ll be providing state of the art health services including patient behavioral health care across South Central Iowa,” said Bahls.

If you would like to help the Clarke County Hospital Foundation and Clarke County Hospital realize this final stage of funding for the construction project, please contact Tom Bahls, Clarke County Hospital Foundation Director at 800 South Fillmore Street, Osceola, IA 50213, phone 641-342-5489 or go to