Construction will bring state-of-the-art technology to ER

SITKA – SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) is renovating and expanding emergency department services at Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital (MEH). The expansion is part of a continued initiative to optimize technology and improve access for all patients at MEH.

“The new emergency room will bring state-of-the-art equipment to Sitka,” says Dr. Daniel Sparks, SEARHC surgeon. “Having a dedicated trauma bay will allow us to stabilize and treat the most acutely ill patients.”

Once completed, the emergency department will include four private trauma/treatment rooms, a triage room, a new nurses’ station and nurse call system. The department will also have a new centralized monitoring system with telemedicine capabilities allowing SEARHC providers to consult with one another by “line of sight” and other healthcare experts through video conferencing.

“I’m very excited for the ER remodel,” says Dr. Kimberly Capp, chief hospitalist at SEARHC. “It’s going to offer improved privacy, better flow, more space for family and friends, and all of that allows us, providers, to give excellent care.”

Surgical care services on the ground floor of MEH will temporarily relocate to the third floor on Sept. 5 to prepare for the beginning of construction. During the renovation, the emergency department will remain open 24/7 with no interruption of services. Patients should enter through the main hospital entrance, where signs will provide clear directions for patients and families visiting MEH.

The project is expected to take four months and will expand the size of the current emergency department from 1,000 square feet to approximately 3,400 square feet. Construction is supposed to start at the end of September.

“Our community deserves excellent healthcare, and SEARHC is committed to improving our services for patients,” says Jeff Prater, the hospital administrator at SEARHC. “Emergency room service and wait times will not be affected during construction.”

SEARHC services are available to all Sitka residents, and SEARHC is in-network with most insurers. Anyone interested in learning more is encouraged to call 966-HERE (4373).