Hospital Planner Wins National Honor
Milwaukee, WI (Jan. 8, 2009) — A “logical not lavish” approach to hospital development earned Froedtert & Community Health’s John Balzer a place on a national list of “Twenty Who Are Making a Difference” in healthcare facility planning and design. The honorees, who were nominated by their professional peers, include physicians, architects, educators, construction engineers and others. The list appears in the December issue of Healthcare Design Magazine.
As Vice President of Facility Planning and Development for Froedtert & Community Health, Balzer has overseen dozens of construction projects in his 28 years with the organization, from configuring space for the installation of Froedtert Hospital’s first CT scanner in the early 1980s to building the West Clinics in 1991 to his instrumental role in creating the new Froedtert & The Medical College of Wisconsin Clinical Cancer Center in 2008.
Balzer was nominated by Jim Mladucky, OWP/P Architects, and Tim Jones, Mortenson Construction, who worked with Balzer on building the new Clinical Cancer Center. According to Mladucky, Balzer coined the term “logical, not lavish” to describe his belief that every element of the hospital’s development projects must put high-quality patient care first, and accomplish it in a way that gets the most value from every construction dollar. Mladucky said Balzer’s philosophy meant the new Clinical Cancer Center wouldn’t have fireplaces or marble floors but still would be a serene, comforting environment that truly responds to the needs of cancer patients.
“To John, ‘logical not lavish’ means using evidence-based design to facilitate first-class care,” Mladucky said. “Especially with the cost challenges facing health care today, every investment in facilities has to be logically justified, appropriate and meaningful.” Mladucky noted that Balzer’s fiscal prudence enabled the hospital to build an additional floor in the new cancer center to accommodate growth through 2012.
“Froedtert used today’s dollars to buy space for tomorrow,” Mladucky said. “That’s using limited resources wisely to position Froedtert for the needs of the community’s next generation.”
Note to Editors: Balzer lives in Wauwatosa.
Author: Kathy Sieja
Date: Jan. 8, 2009