Hilltown Healthcare expected to relocate soon after October

— From Google Earth

The yellow line shows the travel-path from Hilltown Healthcare’s current office, on the left, to its new office, on the right. The Berne-Knox-Westerlo school campus sits between them.

BERNE — Although Berne-Knox-Westerlo officials have said that Hilltown Healthcare is welcome to continue operating out of its 1772 Helderberg Trail office for as long as it needs, the clinic’s founder, nurse practitioner Jill Martin, told The Enterprise that she expects to relocate relatively soon. 

Martin had put together plans to build a new office at 1705 Helderberg Trail — less than half-a-mile away — before the school district earlier this year announced its intent to purchase the building containing the old office, but the coronavirus pandemic and its litany of complications delayed construction. 

Construction has officially begun, Martin told The Enterprise this week, and is expected to be complete in October — albeit more than $100,000 over what she had originally planned, Martin projects. 

“We anticipate moving into the new location shortly after without any significant foreseen interruption of services,” she said, adding, “Our new location will be close in size to our current office with potential for future expansion.” 

Martin founded Hilltown Healthcare in 2019 after Community Care Physicians, which owned a clinic in the same location, pulled out of the area earlier that year. The owners of the building, James and Kimberly Conklin, who had been living in its residential portion, approached BKW about buying the property in 2021, and district voters approved the $410,000 purchase last month. 

The school district is going to convert the residence into a business office and, when Martin relocates the clinic, find a new community-oriented service to replace it. 

Martin told The Enterprise earlier this year that, before she knew of any sale, she had purchased 1705 Helderberg Trail as a “back-up” location. 

Hilltown Healthcare currently serves over 1,600 patients, she said, and is searching for a new medical practitioner to add to its staff. 

“Now that we have been officially deemed a medically underserved area, a provider could potentially qualify for a loan forgiveness grant which is a substantial bonus in addition to our competitive salary and benefit package,” she said.

As for what she’d like to see replace her clinic in the old office, Martin said, “As a Hilltown resident, I would like to see BKW use the current location to provide additional services to the community. Perhaps affordable daycare to help the young working families in our community should be considered.” 

More Hilltowns News

  • The $3 million tentative budget hits its 2-percent tax levy limit, but that won’t apply to all residents in the town since the important increases occur within three of the town’s special districts. 

  • At a lightly-attended annual meeting held at the Berne Town Hall last week, Kenneth’s Army members defended their group against accusations of financial misdealings and disregard for the sisters of the group’s namesake — providing key evidence when it could — while non-members criticized The Enterprise for its coverage of those issues.

  • The Knox Conservation Advisory Council has tapped a local group of nature walkers, the Thursday Naturalists, to develop a species list for the wetland area where the town had once installed a public boardwalk that has since fallen into disrepair. The chairman of the council has said that he hopes to rehabilitate the boardwalk. 

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