SHAMOKIN — Primary Health Network and Geisinger will partner to build an $8 million complex offering primary care, a pharmacy, behavioral health services, women’s care and pediatric care in a three-story complex in downtown Shamokin.

State Sen. John Gordner made the announcement Thursday afternoon standing next to Shamokin Mayor John Brown and the driving force of the project, Northumberland County Commissioner Sam Schiccatano, in front of the former Jones Hardware building.

The city was awarded $1 million grant through the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Project, Gordner said.

"If those of us who grew up in Shamokin don't go out and do something for this city then who will," Schiccatano said.

Schiccatano said, two years ago his wife had to go to the emergency room and she waited for several hours. The commissioner decided to contact Danville's Geisinger Medical Center officials, and began to set up meetings about bringing a complex to Shamokin, Gordner said.

"He was the driving force for this and he worked on it every day for the past two years," Gordner said. "I wasn't sure this was going to happen, but here we are today."

The three-story complex will sit in the 300 block of Independence Street in the downtown, Don Pownell, of Keystone Healthcare Development, of Sharon, said.

Pownell is a representative of Keystone Healthcare Development, which will be building the project.

"We are all excited and this is something that is needed in Shamokin," he said.

The project will be a 29,000 square foot newly constructed building in downtown Shamokin, Pownell said. The building's first floor will house a Fresh Food Farmacy, pharmacy, and care works (urgent care).

The second floor will house Primary Health Network Primary Care and Behavioral Health. The third floor will house Geisinger Health System Women's Care and Pediatrics plus other rotating specialties. The urgent care will be run by both Primary Health Network and Geisinger.

State Rep. Kurt Masser, who was not at the press conference, called in from Orlando, Florida.

"I am in the middle of Epcot Center and I can tell you all I would much rather be in Shamokin today," he said. "I am thrilled to be part of this and the amount of time and teamwork by everyone involved was great."

The first phase of construction on the complex is set to begin in the fall, Pownell said. The project is expected to be completed by the fall of 2020.

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