UH Begins Construction of New Emergency Center

The new $17.7-million Union Hospital Emergency Center is scheduled to open in the late fall of next year and will be a key component of the hospital’s effort to meet the community’s growing healthcare needs.

“The current Emergency Department has served the hospital for more than 20 years, but advances in treating patients and the technology necessary to support our doctors and staff created a critical need for the construction of the new Emergency Center,” said Carey Gardner, the hospital’s director of community relations.

An estimated 150 people, including federal, state and local public officials, attended an official groundbreaking ceremony Monday afternoon (Aug. 25) to kick off construction of the 37,000-square-foot, two-level Emergency Center being built as an addition to the current hospital building. It will be located near the current Emergency Department entrance and hospital cafeteria, and extend into a portion of the large parking lots at the rear of the hospital campus.

The hospital has established a separate page on its current website – www.unionhospital.org/emergencycenter - and a Facebook page – “Union Hospital Emergency Center” – to provide routine construction and progress updates.

During construction, the current Emergency Department entrance at the rear of the main hospital building will be used as usual for patient arrivals. However, parking availability and locations will vary as the work progresses, and Gardner said he encourages drivers to use the free Valet Parking Service that has been added at the Emergency Department main entrance from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily to relieve any parking concerns. The Valet Parking Service staff members will be available to park cars, give parking directions and assist patients into the “ER” and back into their car, he said.

Additional signage also will be installed outside of the Emergency Department entrance to assist patients.

The new Emergency Center will include an expanded floor plan, more than doubling the size of the current 15,000-square-foot facility. A total of 38 patient rooms will be built, which will be larger, better organized and fully equipped to provide excellent care. The current Emergency Department has 30 rooms with varying sizes and technology capabilities.

The new Emergency Center also will feature major treatment and trauma rooms, isolation rooms, a bariatric room and dedicated OB/GYN room with extra privacy.

Originally constructed in 1995, the current Emergency Department was designed to accommodate an estimated 33,000 patient visits each year. In 2013, the Emergency Department saw more than 42,000 patients and projected growth is expected to continue in upcoming years. The new Emergency Center is designed to accommodate that growth, Gardner said.

“Quite simply, the new Emergency Center will provide a better quality of care in an efficient environment to meet current and future needs,” Gardner said. “Our commitment is to provide the best level of care that we can to the Tuscarawas Valley, and this new Emergency Center will fulfill that goal for decades to come.”

The hospital has launched a capital fund-raising campaign to help with the cost of building the new Emergency Center. Monte Ball, the hospital’s director of fund development, said the hospital has announced a $5-million fundraising goal for the campaign.

Ball said those interested in making a gift or multi-year pledge to the Emergency Center Capital Campaign, or who would like more information, should call him at (330) 602-0789 or contact him via email at monteb@unionhospital.org. Ball said he’s also available to give presentations on this project to area businesses, clubs and organizations.

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