Moving day has finally come –– St. Anthony Shawnee Hospital has just finished an extensive construction project that tripled the square footage of its campus without adding a single licensed bed to its facility. On Wednesday, the hospital began moving three departments into its brand new west tower.

Moving day has finally come –– St. Anthony Shawnee Hospital has just finished an extensive construction project that tripled the square footage of its campus without adding a single licensed bed to its facility.

On Wednesday, the hospital began moving three departments into its brand new west tower.

“On Thursday, we will be delivering our last baby in the current Women’s Center –– and on Friday, the first baby (will be delivered) in the new Women’s Center,” Carla Tollett, public relations, communications and marketing consultant at the hospital, said.

At an open house celebration last week, the public was invited to tour the tower.

The new construction is a 119,000 square-foot, three-story addition –– a significant expansion of the facility –– that houses the new Women's Center, intensive care unit, and surgical services.

Each floor of the new tower serves as a particular department: Surgery, ground floor; Women's Center, second floor; and ICU, third floor.

Chuck Skillings, hospital president, said the project is a major milestone for healthcare in the community.

The expansion is touted to be a bold effort to step firmly away from traditional –– and outdated –– methods of operation.

“We thought we were a pretty good hospital coming into this; we are a better hospital today,” Skillings said, “because we are here every day to strive for the exceptional in everything we do and, as a result, for those of you who don't work in this building, you can benefit from those services.”

Linda E. Brown, vice president of support services and administration liaison for the construction project, said, “We believe being able to accommodate our patients in this way will help make a difference. Their doctors are already here. Our hope is they will recognize we are fully capable of providing all their care here.”

Ward 3 City Commissioner James Harrod expressing his support of the project, said, “I thought the new addition was super great –– so very proud of this facility for Shawnee.”

City Manager Justin Erickson said he thinks the new hospital tower is a wonderful addition to Shawnee.

“I’m especially thankful for the leadership team at St. Anthony Shawnee and the Avedis Foundation for making their dream a reality,” Erickson said.

Mayor Wes Mainord said the medical facility is very impressive and Shawnee is very blessed to have it.

Because of the tower addition, some adaptation will be required.

To offset the adjustment, benches are strategically placed down some of the longer corridors, to better accommodate patients and visitors to the hospital.

Also, some changes have been made in an effort to help nurses compensate for the vast amount of extra daily steps in the much larger campus.

The hospital is replacing large, central supply rooms with individual cabinets called patient servers.

“It’ll be stocked from the outside of the room, from the hallway, and it’ll have in it the supplies that the staff need to take care of the patient,” Brown said.

“Instead of one large nursing station,” Brown said, “we have designed smaller nursing stations, called hoteling stations, that put nurses closer to patients.”

Four new elevators have been added–– two public elevators and two for patient transport, which are large enough for patient beds and equipment.

Phase two, planned to be finished by June, will act as a facelift for the existing building. The main entrance’s curb is to transform into a zero-level entry, lending to easier accessibility.

 

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