I always say that if you don't drive around Sioux Falls for two weeks, new buildings and businesses will pop up that you've never seen before. That is just how quickly our city seems to grow!

So when I read the article in Sioux Falls Business with Jodi Schwan, about the new rehab hospital opening in Sioux Falls this month, I wasn't shocked, just appropriately- - surprised.

We have a thriving medical community in Sioux Falls, so my surprise was rooted in the facts that, A) I didn't know another hospital was being built a short drive from where we work and B) I didn't know another medical facility was being built, period.

Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital will open the doors to its first patient on  Monday, June 15. Based in Alabama, Encompass is the largest in-patient rehab hospital group with 136 hospitals across the country.

Apparently construction was already underway when our tornadoes hit last September and although the site sustained substantial damage, their opening was only pushed back a couple of weeks.

Patients will be referred by their physicians for continuing therapy as they recover from strokes, heart attacks, brain injuries, orthopedic injuries, pulmonary issues, surgeries, and more.

There is an outdoor therapy area in addition to the indoor rehab facilities. An element of occupational therapy is also part of what Encompass will be providing, in terms of patients being encouraged to practice activities they would be doing every day, from cooking to cleaning, and even driving a vehicle.

They have recently cared for people recovering from COVID-19 at their other locations and will do so here, of course, if needed.

Encompass Sioux Falls CEO Michael O'Keefe sees the hospital as another layer of medical service for patients who previously may have had to go out of state, or need more intensive recuperative therapy than they would receive at a nursing care facility.

Encompass Hospital is located on 69th Street, east of Solberg Avenue.

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