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WellSpan York Hospital announces plans for new emergency department

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Rendering of WellSpan York Hospital emergency department
This is an artist's rendering of the outside of the new WellSpan York Hospital emergency department, which is scheduled to be completed in 2017.

WellSpan York Hospital will begin construction in the summer of 2014 on a new emergency department that will provide patients with a private, patient-centered care experience.

The approximate 46,000-square foot project in the area of the hospital’s current emergency department is anticipated to cost $50 million.

The finished emergency department is currently scheduled to open to patients by the fall of 2017.

The current hospital’s emergency department cares for nearly 78,000 patients per year in a facility designed to treat around 50,000.

“As our communities continue to grow and age, the number of individuals needing emergency services is only going to increase,” said Keith Noll, president of WellSpan York Hospital.

Noll said great emphasis has been placed on redesigning and improving the processes that impact patient flow in the emergency department and admission to WellSpan York Hospital.

“The new facility won’t be as efficient, if we don’t improve the processes,” stressed Noll. “We have had multidisciplinary teams test and pilot the new processes.”

WellSpan constructed a mock ED in a West Manchester Township warehouse to simulate scenarios and walk throughs. More than 1,400 feedback items from staff members were documented and many of them are being incorporated in the overall design of the facility and patient flow.

“Offering the community a new emergency department will certainly be a great achievement for the hospital. Beyond the bricks and mortar and all the special amenities, staff members from throughout the hospital are currently focused on improving our processes and patient flow so that our patients notice a difference in the care they experience today as well as on day one of our new facility in 2017,” Noll said.

In addition to the planned improvements to the facility, the hospital continues to focus on process improvements. Efforts underway are already having a significant impact on improving the patient experience, including the reduction of patient wait times that occur throughout a typical visit to the emergency department and then as inpatients.

Noll said the new emergency department will strengthen York Hospital’s ability to provide care to individuals who are seriously injured or ill as well as the many patients who require treatment for minor conditions.

In addition to an area dedicated to complete care of patients with minor injuries and illnesses, the new emergency department is planning to offer dedicated treatment areas for pediatric, cardiovascular, orthopedic and behavioral health patients.

The project’s guiding principle is to create an environment that promotes patient-centered care, patient safety, efficiency and employee satisfaction while meeting the needs of the community.

The hospital’s existing emergency department will continue to serve patients during the construction project. More details on the phases of the emergency department project will be communicated as they are finalized.

Special features of WellSpan York Hospital’s new emergency department

WellSpan York Hospital’s new emergency department will offer patients a private care experience in a modern facility provided by the department’s skilled physicians and clinical staff.

Special features of the hospital’s new emergency department will include:

  • A private patient care environment
  • A fully-dedicated treatment area for patients with minor injuries and illnesses
  • Dedicated patient treatment areas for pediatric, cardiovascular, orthopedic and behavioral health patients
  • Multiple work pods for staff and providers, hospitalists and specialists for clinical staff efficiency
  • Improved staff support facilities
  • Improved presence of financial counselor, registration and checkout area for patients
  • Patient/visitor amenities
  • Pediatric waiting area

Major renovations to be completed in 2017 will improve patient experience

WellSpan York Hospital will become the third WellSpan hospital to renovate its emergency department in a five-year period.

WellSpan Gettysburg Hospital’s new emergency department opened in 2012 and Ephrata Community Hospital’s new emergency department opened this year.

Funding for York Hospital’s new ED will be provided through WellSpan Health’s capital budget. Efforts of the York Health Foundation will also play a significant role in providing funding resources for specific areas of the project. Individuals who are interested in financially supporting the project can contact the York Health Foundation at 851-3595.

HKS of Washington, D.C., is the project architect and Alexander Building Construction of Harrisburg, has been selected as the construction management company.

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