Local dignitaries and hospital staff gathered Monday outside Leesburg Regional Medical Center’s emergency room for a groundbreaking. The $27 million expansion is expected to open in the spring of next year and will include a second short-stay wing as well as a new helicopter pad. There will also be separate entrances for patients and ambulances.
With more than 300 people visiting the LRMC emergency room every day, Gerry Tucker, second vice-chair, treasurer of the LRMC Foundation, says this expansion is vital to the community. “We’re growing and we need all the help we can get. You see all this political stuff in the news about health care, but if it’s your spouse or child that needs care in the emergency room, you don’t care about all that,” Gerry says. “They’re starting this without the money because it’s that important. The last thing you want to hear is that your loved one is being flown to another hospital because we can’t treat them here.”
The expansion of the emergency room will provide 22,000 square feet, almost double the size it is now. This space will add an additional 24 ER rooms, all of them private with solid walls. There will be a FasTTrack option for minor complaints to move patients through the process much quicker. Another new feature is less noise. The staff will be voice- and data-linked to one another so there will be no need for intercom. Secure areas away from the general public will be provided to treat criminal and drug-related admissions.
Today, the emergency room at LRMC sees about 47,000 people annually, and the new ER will make those numbers easier to handle. “This is another great day for health care,” says Mack Andrews, chairman of the LRMC Foundation board. “With the generous support of our community, we’ll be able to provide quality care for everyone from infancy through the senior years.”
The ER now is set up to treat 25,000 patients annually, which means the staff is now facing overcrowding situations, long waits, and insufficient treatment areas with a lack of privacy. Add to that those who comes to the emergency room because they don’t have a doctor or can’t see their doctor, and it creates an overwhelming atmosphere.
Since the short-stay wing was added in 2015, it has been at capacity most days. With these new private rooms for patient care, it allows nurses more time with each patient and improves the overall experience for staff, patients, and their families.
Gregory Lewis, chairman of the board of Leesburg Regional Hospital pointed out that the original emergency room had eight beds and one attending physician. “Now we have the Emergency Department, Primary Stroke Center, and the LRMC Heart Institute.”
With the recent announcement of more homes being built in the Leesburg area, Mayor Bob Bone says, “Having a hospital of this calibre that constantly strives to meet the needs of the community is a symbol that Leesburg is a good place to live.”
“This is another great step toward the future,” says Ted Williams, president of the LRMC Foundation. “We’ll have state-of-the-art health care in Leesburg.”
Sandi Moore, executive director of the Leesburg Area Chamber of Commerce says this expansion will add to the quality of life in Leesburg. “Having high-quality health care close to home is essential. It’s great that the hospital is expanding for the community, and I’m excited to see it come to fruition.
With the slogan “BiggER. FastER. BettER,” Leesburg Regional Medical Center is ready to move ahead with their Capital Campaign for the LRMC Emergency Department, Short-Stay Wing II, and Helicopter Pad.
For information on giving or to discuss your gift, contact Ted Williams, president of the LRMC Foundation, at email@example.com or 352.323.5501.