Posted Tuesday, April 24, 2012
New construction underway at The Miriam Hospital will not only modernize the hospital’s busy emergency department (ED), but will also create a new outpatient unit for patients undergoing diagnostic and interventional cardiac catheterizations.
According to Arthur J. Sampson, executive director of The Miriam Hospital, the renovations will allow the hospital to meet the growing and changing needs of the community while adapting to changes in health care and technology.
“These improvements are critical in order to keep pace with increasing demand for emergency medical services and advances in cardiology, including sophisticated, minimally invasive techniques,” said Sampson. “Our patients, physicians and staff deserve the most modern and efficient facilities equipped with the latest technology. We’re confident these updates will create an environment that promotes high quality, patient-centered care and will ensure The Miriam Hospital remains a national leader in emergency and cardiac medicine.”
|Kenneth Korr, M.D, (left) director of the division of cardiology at The Miriam Hospital, and Gary Bubly, M.D., (right) director of emergency medicine at The Miriam Hospital.|
All construction will take place inside the current footprint of the hospital’s emergency department, which should cause minimal disruption to the neighboring community. The first phase of the project, currently underway, will expand the area where patients will be evaluated before, and recover after, diagnostic and interventional cardiac catheterizations.
The creation of an 18-bed outpatient unit adjacent to the catheterization lab will provide additional capacity for patients undergoing specialized procedures such as angioplasty, stenting and pacemaker implantation. The new recovery unit enables patients to be closely monitored following their procedure and can accommodate those patients requiring a post-catheterization overnight stay for observation following their catheterization. In addition, the unit will also house a pre- and post-endoscopy care area.
The Miriam’s cardiac catheterization lab performs approximately 4,700 procedures each year for disorders of the heart and blood vessels, including coronary artery disease, acute heart attack, congestive heart failure, valve disease, congenital heart defects, cardiac arrhythmias, cardiomyopathy and peripheral vascular disease.
“The Miriam Hospital has a longstanding tradition of being at the forefront of cardiac care, and with the success of cardiac catheterization as a diagnostic and treatment tool, expansion of our catheterization laboratory is critical in order to accommodate growing patient volume,” said Sampson. “This is part of our commitment to providing advanced, expert cardiac care to the community.”
The second phase of the project, scheduled to begin in July 2012, calls for renovations of The Miriam Hospital’s emergency department. Private exam areas will replace existing curtained bays to help promote infection control, reduce noise and improve patient confidentiality. As part of the new configuration, a section of the emergency department will be dedicated to more critical patients while a new triage area will be make it easier and more convenient for emergency medical services personnel bringing patients via ambulance. The ED will also have its own dedicated 64-slice CT-scanner to diagnose patients quickly without having to rely on equipment being used by the rest of the hospital.
More than 55,000 patients visit The Miriam Hospital’s emergency department each year, and approximately 70 percent of all patients who are admitted to the hospital come in through the ED. The facility, most recently updated in the 1990s, was originally designed to treat approximately 30,000 patients and cannot accommodate the current volume, said Sampson.
“The emergency department is the essentially the ‘front door’ of The Miriam Hospital, yet our current facilities do not reflect the high quality of care we provide every day,” he said. “These much-needed renovations and modest expansion will improve both functionality and workflow. This will enable our expert team to operate more efficiently to accommodate our growing volume, meaning patients will be seen quickly, with less wait time, in a more comfortable environment.”
Sampson says the two renovated areas will be adjacent and complementary. “Having these two departments in such close proximity means a patient who arrives at The Miriam Hospital following a sudden cardiac event will receive seamless expert care as they move from our emergency room directly next door to the cath lab,” he said.
The hospital’s existing emergency room and cardiac catheterization laboratory will remain in full operation during construction. The project is expected to be done by December 2013.
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