ONALASKA — Allergy Associates of La Crosse broke ground Monday on an addition to its Onalaska headquarters that will feature state-of-the-art food allergy testing suites and a demonstration kitchen.
The 10,000-square-foot addition to the clinic also will provide office and exam space for providers, as well as an allergy education center for patients, physicians and the general public, clinic officials said.
Wieser Brothers General Contractor Inc. and HSR Associates are designing and constructing the new building, which also will provide office space for Allergychoices.
“Through our diagnostic and treatment protocol using sublingual immunotherapy under the La Crosse Method Protocol, we hope to help more patients prevent life-threatening reactions,” said Dr. Mary Morris, Allergy Associates president and daughter of founder Dr. David Morris.
“This facility will help us expand our services and capacity to help more of those patients and their families, who often live in fear of reactions from accidental exposure to foods,” Morris said.
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The addition, which nearly mirrors the present building at 2727 Midwest Drive and will be attached with a walkway, also will enable Allergy Associates to expand its research, she said.
The current clinic was completed in 2010, relocating from the Professional Arts Building at Mayo Clinic Health System-Franciscan Healthcare in La Crosse, where it had been located since its founding in 1970.
Allergy Associates of La Crosse draws patients from throughout the U.S. for its pioneering treatment for environmental and food allergies.
A recent study by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that food allergies among children increased by about 50 percent between 1997 and 2011. Historically, food allergy treatment has been limited primarily to avoidance, but accidental exposures continue to occur.
Statistics show that a food allergy reaction requiring emergency care takes place every three minutes, according to Allergy Associates officials.