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A new $109 million Oviedo Medical Center next to Oviedo ER will open the opportunity for more than 200 jobs when it is expected to be complete in early 2017.

On Thursday at 10 a.m., a groundbreaking event covered what the new 198,000-square-foot hospital on Red Bug Lake Road will offer for UCF and the surrounding areas.

“We have great schools and I think a great opportunity to really … stay local as much as we can, whether it’s recruiting talent, physicians or staff,” said KC Donahey, CEO of Oviedo Medical Center.

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The hospital will expand Oviedo ER to 22 beds and include medical and surgical inpatient units, intensive care, medical cardiology, telemetry, cardiac catheterization and women’s services, including labor and delivery.

“Think about what this means to our community. Think of the development that’s going to happen. Think of the change that it’s going to have. Think of the medical services five minutes from your home,” Oviedo Mayor Dominic Persampiere said at the event. “That is what this is all about.

“Two years ago, we all stood here. Oviedo ER opened up and they didn’t know how many patients they were going to serve. They had a number. They doubled, tripled and quadrupled that number.”

Once the new medical center opens, Donahey said it is expected to serve more than 35,000 patients in its first year.

Currently, there are 30 to 40 employees at the free-standing ER. Donahey said the new employees would mostly consist of medical professionals, but will also be working in housekeeping, food services and nursing. The average salary will be $58,000, he said.

“I’m very excited about the opportunity partnership with UCF. We haven’t really explored yet exactly how that partnership will work,” he said. “I know that our company has a relationship, but I look forward to building a relationship myself, whether that be on the side of medical staff or on the side of the many professionals we’re going to be working with.”

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Veronica Brezina is a Contributing Writer for the Central Florida Future.

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