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Published on August 15, 2018

MidMichigan Medical Center – West Branch Breaks Ground on New Emergency Department

Photo of ground breaking of the new ED at MidMichigan Medical Center - West Branch.

MidMichigan Medical Center – West Branch broke ground on a new 17,505 square foot innovative Emergency Department (ED) today, Wednesday, Aug. 15, at a ceremony held at the Medical Center.  More than 100 guests attended the celebration and learned how the new building will strengthen the Medical Center’s emergency service line in the region and enhance the overall patient experience. Those pictured (left to right) are: Anthony Bair, manager, emergency department, MidMichigan Medical Center – West Branch; Richard Bachelder, board member, MidMichigan Medical Center – West Branch; Tom Kish, board member, MidMichigan Medical Center – West Branch; Mark Weber, M.D., vice president of medical affairs, MidMichigan Medical Center – West Branch; Bob McGrail, president, MidMichigan Medical Center – West Branch; Diane Postler-Slattery, president and CEO, MidMichigan Health; Paul Bucchi, M.D., emergency department medical director; Erich Kickland, M.D, emergency medicine physician; Jacquie Katterman, board member, MidMichigan Medical Center – West Branch; Arnie Engster, board member, MidMichigan Medical Center – West Branch, and J. Daniel Stoneback, board chair for the Medical Center in West Branch.

MidMichigan Medical Center – West Branch broke ground on a new 17,505 square foot innovative Emergency Department (ED) today at a ceremony held at the Medical Center.  Bob McGrail, president, MidMichigan Medical Center – West Branch, J. Daniel Stoneback, board chair for the Medical Center in West Branch, and MidMichigan Diane Postler-Slattery, president and CEO, MidMichigan Health, shared with the more than 100 attendees how the new building will strengthen the Medical Center’s emergency service line in the region and enhance overall patient experience.

Following the ceremony, crews began pre-site construction of the new building which will be located in the current ED parking lot. Once completed, it will adjoin the Medical Center via an internal corridor. Full construction is expected to begin Tuesday, Aug. 21 at which time crews will cordon off the site. While construction is expected to take one year, it will not interrupt emergency care in the Medical Center’s existing ED.

“We will remain open 24/7 during construction to provide quality, safe emergency care in our existing ED,” said McGrail. “Emergency Department parking will change, so we ask patients to drive cautiously and follow the appropriate temporary parking and entrance signs.”

McGrail noted that Scout, MidMichigan’s construction mascot, will be featured on the signs to help guide patients to where they need to go. Outpatient service and visitor parking at the main entrance of the Medical Center remains unaffected.

The Medical Center wrestled with the decision to either update the existing ED or build a new one for several years prior to joining MidMichigan Health, according to McGrail. One of the goals was to increase patient treatment rooms to better meet volumes and to provide more privacy for patients.

“Simply renovating would not allow us to increase the number of patient treatments rooms, but as an independent hospital having the capital for new construction was a barrier,” he said. “MidMichigan Health was very supportive of our desire to build a new ED and this expansion project is one example of MidMichigan Health investing locally in our community.”

“This is an exciting time for the residents of West Branch, the patients served by the Medical Center and MidMichigan Health,” said Postler-Slattery. “The construction of the new Emergency Department is testament that by working together, we are able to enhance the services and capabilities at the Medical Center. What’s more, our partnership allows us to strengthen the already high level of service and quality of care those in West Branch and the surrounding area are accustomed to receiving.”

The new ED will feature 18 patient treatment rooms (up from 11 in the current ED), including two large trauma rooms, on-site radiology and a design that improves operational flow which is expected to improve patient satisfaction.  Patient comfort and convenience are keys to the design, with a welcoming lobby filled with natural light and easy access.

To ensure project goals were met, MidMichigan Medical Center – West Branch engaged Huddy HealthCare Solutions, an ED design expert, to assist designing the advanced ED for West Branch. Huddy has designed more than 300 emergency departments worldwide.

“Huddy is the leader in designing state-of-the-art, functional ED departments,” McGrail added. “It was a privilege to work with them on this project.”

He continued that a multi-disciplinary approach was taken in designing the new ED.

“Representatives from all of our ancillary service lines that provide support and/or care for our ED patients, staff nurses and physicians were involved in the design along with the architects.”

Emergency Department Medical Director Paul Bucchi, M.D., was one of the physicians on the design team and is excited about the new facility.

“My partners and I have personally been part of the design team for this facility from day one to ensure it will be optimal for us to provide the excellent care that is synonymous with MidMichigan Health, Michigan Medicine, and GMEP,” Dr. Bucchi said.  “We are very proud to break ground on this new facility and look forward to its grand opening next year.”

A community open house will be held in the new ED in 2019. Those interested in construction updates on the project may visit www.midmichigan.org/westbranch

FUN FACTS

The Emergency Department expansion at MidMichigan Medical Center – West Branch will require approximately more than: 15,050 pieces of brick and stone; 2,865 sheets of drywall; 205 dump truck loads of dirt moved during excavation; 250 cubic yards of concrete; 2 miles of pipe, 10 miles of electrical wire, not including telephone or data wire; and 160 tons of structural steel.