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Murrysville Commons represents foray by West Penn Allegheny

| Thursday, Nov. 22, 2012, 7:57 a.m.
(c) 2012 Lillian DeDomenic
Dr. Marcia Nelson and Dr. Amy Kim of Murrysville Internal Medicine review a patients records in one of the consult rooms. The medical offices are part of the new Murrysville Commons on Old William Penn Highway. Lillian DeDomenic | For The Murrysville Star
(c) 2012 Lillian DeDomenic
Dr. Mark Rubino talks about the advantages of having eveything under one roof in the recently opened Murrysville Commons. Lillian DeDomenic | for the Murrysville Star

Murrysville Commons might look like a sprawling home along Old William Penn Highway, but the only thing it houses is medical care.

The complex, which opened at the end of October, is Murrysville's first dedicated medical office building. It will be home to two medical practices staffed by local doctors.

“We really thought this was the right community for us to be in,” said Dr. Mark Rubino of Murrysville, whose obstetrics and gynecological practice will work out of the building's specialist wing. “We made an investment to make this happen in such a great community.”

The facility also represents a foray into Westmoreland County for West Penn Allegheny Health System.

Stephanie Waite, a spokeswoman for West Penn Allegheny, said Murrysville Commons is the first complex of its kind developed in Westmoreland County by the hospital system, which includes Forbes Regional Hospital in Murrysville.

“We're very interested in the Murrysville area,” Waite said. “This is a wonderful development for us.”

Rubino will share one side of the bottom floor of the building with a rotating group of specialists that he said eventually will include doctors of cardiology, dermatology, endocrinology, gastroentology, neurosurgery and orthopedics.

Down the hall from East Suburban Obstetrical and Gynecological Associates — Rubino's practice — is Murrysville Internal Medicine Associates. There, Dr. Marcia Nelson and Dr. Amy Kim will see patients five days a week. Kim has lived in Murrysville for several years and said she wanted to practice in Murrysville because of the feel of the community.

“To completely heal a person, you have to know their background, their history, it all plays a role,” Kim said. “Having patients from a community that we know helps us achieve that.”

Nelson said the situation the three doctors are in is very unique in this day and age.

“It's very unusual to see these days, to have such a small-town feel in an office,” Nelson said. “It's a beautiful place to be able to practice medicine.”

The complex is a one-stop shop for patients who need testing done as well as doctor visits. The complex offers several diagnostic services, including x-rays, ultrasounds, electrocardiograms and lab services.

Patients also can receive cardiac rehabilitation therapy and other forms of physical therapy through Alliance Physical Therapy and Rehab, housed on the complex's second floor.

The Murrysville Spa, a skin care and laser center, will open later this month on the second floor as well. Customers can receive various therapeutic and medical massages, facial treatments, laser treatments, filler treatments, botox, eyelash services and body wraps and scrubs.

West Penn Allegheny found itself with a new health care competitor in the east suburbs when UPMC East hospital opened in Monroeville last year.

It might find competition from a former suitor, as well.

Highmark Inc. — which had been working to merge with West Penn Allegheny until the deal fell apart in September — submitted then withdraw a proposal for an ambulatory surgery center in Monroeville. It is expected to submit a revised plan to Monroeville officials next month.

There is a demand for facilities such as Murrysville Commons. The American Hospital Association reports that outpatient visits across the country increased by 75 percent between 1990 and 2010. Hospital admissions during that same time period dropped by 9 percent.

Rubino said he hopes to increase the services offered at Murrysville Commons, eventually bringing back a corporate health screening program once offered by Forbes. He hopes the complex's meeting room is well-used as well.

Daveen Rae Kurutz is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8627, or dkurutz@tribweb.com.

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