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Hammes Company manages 1st new hospital project since Katrina

CHALMETTE, LA, June 5, 2008 – St. Bernard Parish Hospital Service District (HSD) announced today that they have signed a contract with the nation’s top-ranked healthcare facilities developer, Hammes Company, to manage the planning, design, construction and move-in transition for the first new hospital in the area since it was devastated by Hurricane Katrina in August, 2005.

Hammes Company will be assisting the HSD with the development of St. Bernard Parish Hospital, a new 40-bed hospital located on a greenfield site in Chalmette, Louisiana, near New Orleans. The full-service hospital will replace the 200-bed Chalmette Medical Center, which was demolished after Katrina. For the past two and a half years, the healthcare needs of St. Bernard Parish have been served by a temporary mobile clinic operated by the Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System (FMOL) in a vacant Wal-Mart parking lot.

The HSD committee includes Chairman, Daniel Dysart and members Ron Chapman, Jim DiFatta, Dr. Paul Verrette and Dr. Bryan Bertucci. “Hammes is the nation's leading developer of healthcare facilities. Their expertise and experience will provide the HSD with the direction to rapidly establish an excellent and much needed healthcare facility for St. Bernard Parish,” says Daniel Dysart.

The proposed St. Bernard Parish Hospital is planned for completion by late 2010. The pre-Katrina population of St. Bernard Parish was 68,000, which dropped to a post-Katrina low of 12,000. The population is expected to grow to the mid-40,000 range by 2010.

“Hammes Company is honored to be a part of the team working closely with the HSD to facilitate this important service to the St. Bernard Parish community, which has experienced such loss and devastation. We anticipate a full service facility that will be designed for easy expansion as residents continue to return to the parish,” says Phil Wendling, Project Executive with Hammes Company.

The HSD was created by the St. Bernard Parish Council in December, 2007. In a cooperative endeavor agreement with the council, $25M in funding has been provided to the HSD toward the construction of the hospital. Parish President, Craig Taffaro says, “I applaud the HSD's efforts in moving closer to making a hospital in St. Bernard Parish a reality. Together with the members of the St. Bernard Parish Council, I believe that the HSD and the development of the hospital will play an enormous role in the recovery and growth of our parish."