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LBK Foundation receives $500,000 commitment

Ocean Properties Ltd. and an anonymous donor have committed funds for a new Longboat medical center.

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  • | 2:45 p.m. September 22, 2015
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The Longboat Key Foundation is inching closer to its $1.6 million medical center fundraising goal, just three months after announcing its donation campaign.

The foundation announced Tuesday that Ocean Properties Ltd. and an anonymous donor committed $500,000 to support the planned Longboat Key Center for Healthy Living.

In June, the foundation started a $1.6 million fundraising campaign to open a new medical facility on the Key this season.

The $1.6 million will establish a medical practice and a Key medical facility on the Key on or near the vicinity of Bay Isles Road and Bay Isles Parkway. The money will pay for a building lease, the build-out of the facility and two years worth of startup and operating costs needed to run the facility year-round

Andy Berger, vice president of operations for Ocean Properties, which owns the Longboat Key Club and Zota Beachfront Resort on the island, said his company is proud to support the fundraising initiative.

“Health care that is easily available to residents and visitors is an essential component to maintaining the desirable lifestyle and ambience of Longboat Key,” said Berger, in a prepared statement.

Longboat Key Foundation Chairman Bob Simmons said an agreement with a Sarasota physician has been reached to practice at the future facility.

“These generous gifts to aid in creating the Center for Healthy Living respond to a vital community need to restore and enhance the health care services available on Longboat Key,” Simmons said in a prepared statement.

The center will offer primary health care services, which have not been available on Longboat Key since the Key’s sole primary doctor, Dr. Pamela Letts, retired in May 2014.

While Simmons declined to reveal the potential location for the future medical center, he said the facility will have medical and wellness services under one roof on or near Bay Isles Road and will house practitioners specializing in family medicine and other services.

The Center for Healthy Living, Simmons said, would complement a Sarasota Memorial Hospital medical center planned for St. Armands Circle.

The medical center will house more than a family medicine practice. The foundation’s goal is for the center also to house women’s health wellness and specialized care, behavioral heath services, on-site lab and imaging services and specialist services that may include the Roskamp’s Institute’s Sci-Brain program, which was developed to help improve brain health and reduce factors associated with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.



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