HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital – Breese is set to begin construction on a large expansion project that will re-define the ambulatory (outpatient) surgery experience for its patients.
The expansion, which is slated for completion in December of 2017, will link seamlessly to the north side of the hospital, which faces the St. Joseph’s HealthPlex.
The plan includes creating a new ambulatory surgery wing that includes nearby private patient rooms, offering a higher level of privacy and comfort for patients and their families. Poettker Construction won the bid to serve as the general contractor of the project.
“HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital – Breese is committed to meeting the healthcare needs of the people we serve,” said Paulette Evans, the hospital’s President and CEO. “Today, we are the only CMS five 5-star rated hospital in the St. Louis area, and have some of the best outcomes for patients anywhere in the country. This new project is part of our vision of what the future of exceptional care will continue to look like in Clinton County.”
Evans explained that once the project is complete, ambulatory surgery patients will no longer need to be transported across the hospital from the surgical suites to their rooms.
“Our patients requested that the process be more discrete, and we listened,” she said. “All ambulatory surgery needs will be cared for in a private area, away from the bustling main halls of the hospital.”
In preparing for the ambitious expansion project, it is necessary to first move the hospital’s helipad away from the construction area. The relocation of the helipad is scheduled to occur on Sept.7th. The parking lot east of the specialty clinic will be temporarily closed. Additional handicap parking spaces are being added to the parking lot to the west of the specialty clinic.
“Our goal was to eliminate the possibility of an off- site helipad, because that would require the use of an ambulance for patient transfer,” said Brian Moeller, the hospital’s communications director. After studying the options, we made the decision to move the helipad to the Specialty Clinics parking lot on the southeast corner of the hospital.”
“A report prepared by Jerry Lay Aviation indicates that the temporary helipad will offer 3 separate routes of ingress and egress – to and from the West, to and from the East and to and from the Northeast. Of course, the pilot always has the final say as to exactly where he or she wishes to land and what type of approach to make to any landing area.” Moeller said.
When the temporary helipad is activated these approaches will be distributed to all the helicopter services in the State of Illinois and the ones in Missouri that are most prevalent to this area.
Once the temporary helipad is in place, parking will be prohibited in the Specialty Clinics lot. Additional handicapped spaces will be made available in the hospital’s main parking lot. A wheelchair ramp is available from the main parking lot to the Specialty Clinics.
“We apologize for any inconvenience caused by closing the Specialty Clinic parking lot, but the safety of our patients, colleagues and visitors is of utmost importance,” Evans said. “Our consultants point out that a medical helicopter has a maximum takeoff weight of more than 5000 pounds, and has to displace an equal amount of air to hover, and even more for takeoff – generating wind speeds approaching 100+ miles per hour.”
As with the previous helipad location, the hospital will work to maintain a secure landing area for helicopter operations, including a pre-landing inspection of the area.
More information will be available on the hospital expansion as each phase of the project begins.
For questions concerning the temporary helipad location or Specialty Clinics parking, please call the hospital’s communications office at (618) 526-5439.