Naming rights aren't just for pro sports teams and stadiums.
Delta Dental of Minnesota Foundation is giving $4.6 million to Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC) for a part of the county's $220 million ambulatory clinic under construction between 8th and 9th streets and Chicago and Park avenues in downtown Minneapolis.
The Delta Dental Oral Health Center will treat 85 percent of HCMC's dental patients who are either uninsured or covered by public programs. HCMC already provides dental care, but the new clinic will increase access by about 67 percent, or 11,000 visits annually, bringing the total to 27,500.
The new six-story facility will consolidate all of the county's clinics with the aim of delivering patient-centered care. The clinics are now spread out over several buildings.
Delta Dental of Minnesota CEO Rodney Young called the dental center "an important step to help address unmet needs."
According to a news release from HCMC, the Delta grant provides half the capital needed to create the clinic. The grant allows the county to expand to 30 treatment rooms and two consultation rooms with teledentistry capabilities.
The clinic will include a state-of-the-art dental lab and a satellite dental room at the Coordinated Care Clinic, which provides care for patients with complex needs and limited mobility. The county estimates 1,100 patient visits to that facility annually.
Dr. Mary Seieroe, HCMC chief of dentistry, said the grant makes it possible to expand access for the most underserved patients and helps establish "best practices for integration of dental and medical care."
HCMC is the state's largest teaching facility and a safety net hospital, with a mission to provide care to the indigent. Only some 20 percent of its patients carry private insurance. A goal in recent years for CEO Jon Pryor has been to increase that share, and the new downtown clinic is part of that effort.
Among the clinics in the new building will be internal medicine, pediatrics, obstetrics/gynecology, orthopedics, urology, the cancer center and day surgery.
The building is expected to open in January 2018 — just in time for the Super Bowl at the nearby U.S. Bank Stadium.