Following Halifax Regional Health System's (HRHS) recent announcement of plans to construct a new medical office building in Houghton Industrial Park, HRHS has announced that grant funding for the project has been approved by the Tobacco Indemnification and Community Revitalization Commission through the Industrial Development Authority of Halifax County.

In July, HRHS reported that financing for the project would consist of a combination of grant funds and bank financing, with initial grant funding for the project coming from the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development. The projected cost of the project is $3 million. Grant funding received from the Tobacco Commission's Regional Opportunity Fund has been approved in the amount of $54,000. The approval was made based on the Commission's understanding that the new facility would create at least 14 new jobs and serve as a significant investment in the county. John Cannon, Chairman of the Industrial Development Authority stated, "In partnership with HRHS, this project's capital investment and job development will result in enhanced medical services for the region. This progress and growth serves as another milestone in our county's efforts to provide for the needs of our residents while expanding our business and industry."

The new medical office building, totaling approximately 10,000 square feet, will house Halifax Primary Care (HPC), one of Halifax Regional's four family practice clinics. The facility will include eighteen examination rooms, accommodating as many as eight providers and offering convenient access for patients.

‘We are extremely pleased to have this support from the Tobacco Commission and we believe it is evidence of their belief in this project and the important health care services it will provide to individuals in this region," said HRHS Chief Executive Officer Chris Lumsden.

HPC is a practice of Dominion Health Medical Associates, which is wholly owned by HRHS. When it opened last year, HPC had three providers - Marie Ketchersid, M.D., Arthur Fajardo, M.D., and Shannon Runion, F.N.P. They were joined by Ram Neelagiri, M.D. in April 2008. Most recently, HPC expanded again when Joseph Ferguson, M.D. and Michelle Cowden, M.D. joined the practice in early August. Dr. Ferguson will serve as the Medical Director for HPC. Once the site is fully operational, HPC will have 30 employees.