JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - In a continued effort to become a destination medical center, Mayo Clinic’s Jacksonville campus is preparing to open a new building housing hematology, oncology and neurology services.
The Mangurian Building will open to patients on August 6. The building currently rises five stories but is capable of expanding to 12.
The second floor of the Mangurian building will hold 43 chemotherapy infusion rooms, which is almost double the capacity of the previous site. That means more people, like Hollis Youngner, will be able to receive treatment at times that are most convenient to them.
“They have saved my life so many times,” Youngner said of Mayo Clinic. Youngner was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012.
“Spread to the lining around my heart, spread to my liver, my lungs, my abdomen,” Youngner said. “Then in 2016 it came back, spread to my brain.”
While Youngner lives around 90 miles away from the Mayo Clinic, on St. Simons Island in Georgia, she makes the trip every week.
That’s the goal of Mayo Clinic’s expansions, like the Mangurian building; to draw people into Jacksonville for treatment. Currently, Mayo Clinic contributes $2 billion annually to Florida’s economy.
The new building is filled with healthy food options and outdoor spaces for patients and families to relax.
Additionally, the chemotherapy center on the second floor features a wall made of a Brazilian stone rumored to have healing properties. There will also be a bell for patients to ring upon completion of chemotherapy. The chairs in the chemotherapy infusion rooms can heat up and massage patients.
Additionally, there’s a larger space for the neurology and neurosurgery departments, which means it can accommodate more patients.
Another building, known as the cyclotron facility, was also recently completed. The cyclotron is a device that makes the radioactive material that doctors use for drugs that are injected for scans.
“That will go ahead and go right to the cancer or right to the infection,” Jeffrey Snyder, Mayo Clinic Cyclotron Engineer, said. “And because it’s sugar-based, it metabolizes quickly and gives the doctor a really good scan.”
Snyder said the radioactive material has a short half-life, so it has to be made on site in order to be used.