Laredo Medical Center announces major Emergency Room renovations that will decrease wait times
Officials at Laredo Medical Center are proud to announce a major campus development project which is set to begin later this year in March. It involves the expansion of both the Emergency Room and Intensive Care Unit.
Phase I calls for the ER to increase from 28 to 38 private treatment rooms and will be designed with patients, staff and physicians’ needs in mind.
“Our Emergency Room has been very busy,” said Tim Schmidt, Chief Executive Officer at Laredo Medical Center. “In 2009, we saw about a 12% growth in patients.”
During the past year, Schmidt says the hospital was able to make some good improvements in additional improvements.
With an investment of $22.5 million, ER physicians plan on decreasing wait times with the addition of 10 more treatment rooms for a total of 38—and each a private room—as well as an area called ‘fast track’ for minor emergency patients.
“A person that comes into the ER with a minor cut will go to the fast track area,” explained Dr. Luis Pellicia, ER Medical Director at Laredo Medical Center. “In that area, a nurse practitioner or Physician will quickly take care of that person’s needs.”
Meaning minor emergency patients no longer have to wait until major emergency patients—like those with chest pains or trauma—are seen first.
“Now we can basically say we can treat all patients at the same time,” Pellicia continued. “While we’re taking care of the very sick people, we can also take care of minor illnesses, that way expediting everyone’s care.”
Also included in the ER expansion are new rooms with specialized equipment to handle all emergencies, including a 3rd Trauma Room, an Orthopedics Room for broken bones, and an Obstetrics Room for women with pregnancy problems. The expansion will also include a new waiting room.
“We don’t like to see too many people crowded together,” said Andres Arreguin, ER Coordinator at Laredo Medical Center. “We like to give everyone their space where they feel comfortable and their space is not being invaded--a critical healthcare concern for patients with airborne illnesses.”
And with a much bigger Emergency Room, Arreguin says there’s enough space to treat everyone.
“The expansion is not only for Laredo, but for residents of surrounding communities like Zapata, Hebbronville and residents of the Quad Cities. It’s going to definitely be an awesome project to help our community.”
And helping the community is something Laredo Medical Center says they’re committed to.
“The care patients receive in our Emergency Room is top notch compared to any other institution in the United States,” says Dr. Pellicia. “And with our Chest Pain Accreditation, we urge you to come to our ER the minute you feel pain in your chest.” While the expansion will highly benefit healthcare services in Laredo, the addition will add to the local economy as well. About a hundred construction jobs will be awarded through contractors and subcontractors, as well as the additional healthcare personnel LMC will hire to staff the ER and other growing departments, such as Lab and Radiology.
Officials at Laredo Medical Center also say patients are not expected to experience any inconveniences while the upgrades to the Emergency Room take place.
“The construction has been planned in such a way that our services will not be affected,” said Dr. Pellicia. “So despite the fact that we’re going to be expanding, we’re going to continue providing quality care in our ER.”
For more information on the expansion, contact LMC’s Marketing Department at (956) 796-3223 or visit www.laredomedical.com.