Everything Designed for Better Emergency Care in New Silver Cross Hospital
In an emergency situation, every second counts. So, when it came time to design the emergency department opening in the Silver Cross Replacement Hospital in New Lenox on Feb. 26, 2012, improving access and throughput were top priorities.
“Our current Emergency Department was expanded and renovated in 2006. At that time, many patient-family centered care enhancements were included such as glass-enclosed treatment rooms for noise reduction and separate family waiting areas,” said Brandt Fick, Administrative Director of Emergency Services and Diagnostic Imaging. “In the new hospital, the layout of the department will be very similar; however we have made some adjustments to improve the experience for our patients, their families, our physicians, staff, and paramedics.”
For starters, the Hospital’s New Lenox location is ideal and highly visible. The new emergency department (ED) is easily accessible from I-80, I-355 and Route 6. To accommodate the increased traffic, Silver Cross has tripled the size of the Ambulance Bay so that it is now large enough for 9 rigs to pull in. To transfer Level I trauma patients there is also a Helipad right outside the door. The Helipad even has heating coils to melt the ice during the winter, which will help the Silver Cross ED team in providing safe and quick transports to Children’s Memorial, Loyola, etc.
The Silver Cross Emergency Medical Services (EMS) System Staff (formerly Will-Grundy EMS System) will also be located in the ED allowing for more frequent communication with the paramedics. Silver Cross serves as the area’s Resource Hospital for 31 fire departments and ambulance services.
Patients arriving by car will be greeted in the ED Lobby at a Reception Desk and then escorted to one of three Kwik Registration stations before taken to a treatment room. During high volume times, patients will be triaged and depending on the severity of their illness or injury either taken back to a room or asked to wait in the Guest Lounge or children’s area. Patients will still be able to check wait times online at www.silvercross.org for both the Replacement Hospital ED and Silver Cross 24/7 Free-Standing Emergency Care Center in Homer Glen.
Each of the 34 treatment rooms will have monitoring capability including cardiac, blood pressure and pulse oximitry as well as computer charting. Furniture will be mobile allowing staff the flexibility to stock the room according to the patient’s needs. And all 4 trauma rooms will also have mobile computers.
“To improve physician accessibility, we have turned the patient’s bed 90 degrees to alleviate any anxiety the patient may feel by having to watch the busyness of the nurse’s station,” says Jennie Perry, ED Manager. “We have also learned that physician best practice is to stand on the right-side of the patient’s bed, which is closest to the doorway.
Physicians, staff and patients alike will benefit from the many departmental agencies eliminating long transports and increasing throughput. The ED is located next to the Behavioral Health Department, Diagnostic Imaging and Security. There is also a dedicated elevator inside the ED to transport patients up one floor to the Procedural Care Unit for emergency cardiac procedures or surgery. And elevators are nearby to take patients being admitted up to their rooms. No more long transports from one end of the hospital to the other to admit an ED patient. In the new hospital, it’s just a quick elevator ride up a few floors.
“When we move on February 26, we will be ready to care for 80,000 patients a year in the new Emergency Department,” says Fick. “This is a 25% increase over our current capacity.”
The Silver Cross Emergency Department is designated as a Level II Trauma Center, certified as an accredited Chest Pain Center and approved by the State to care for pediatric patients. For more information about emergency services at Silver Cross and the Replacement Hospital visit www.silvercross.org or follow us on Twitter and Facebook.
About Silver Cross Hospital
Silver Cross Hospital is a not-for-profit health care provider serving Will County and southwest suburban communities since 1895. Silver Cross has been recognized as a Thomson Reuters 100 Top Hospitals National Award winner for the last seven consecutive years and as one of America’s Most Customer Friendly Hospitals by the American Alliance of Healthcare Providers. With over 2,900 employees, physicians and volunteers, Silver Cross operates a 304-bed acute care hospital and eight satellite facilities providing outpatient services and physician offices. Construction has begun to build a state-of-the-art replacement hospital opening in 2012 in New Lenox. To learn more about Silver Cross Hospital or a referral to a physician on staff, visit www.silvercross.org or call 1-888-660-HEAL (4325).