Riverside's new Pavilion in Newport News set to open in January
Jan 09, 2013 (Daily Press (Newport News - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
Riverside Regional Medical Center will be opening their new Pavilion building at end of January. Riverside will be holding public tours this Sunday to show off their new Pavilion complex in Newport News. .
A soaring entrance hall and glass-fronted balcony will greet patients at the Pavilion, a new surgical wing at Riverside Regional Medical Center in Newport News. The 250,000 square foot addition expands the hospital's footprint by more than one-third and has the infrastructure to add another four stories. "This is the beginning of the new Riverside," said Dr. Patrick R. Parcells, RRMC administrator and senior vice president of Riverside's Acute Care Division.
The 3 1/2-year, $107 million project, which replaces 72 patient rooms,12 operating suites and two procedure rooms at the existing facility, has also generated between 50 and 75 new full-time jobs. "We're hiring operating room nurses now and we need more maintenance staff," said Parcells, as he showed off the building in advance of a public tour on Sunday.
After that, employees will have an uninterrupted two weeks for orientation and to fine-tune all the equipment -- and conduct two sterilizations of the operating rooms -- before patients are transferred and the Pavilion opens for business on Monday, Jan. 28.
The differences and upgrades for patients range from all-private rooms, each equipped with its own computer, to the use of infection-resistant building materials and diffused overhead lighting. Each room is also equipped for telemetry, or cardiac monitoring. A handful is specially equipped with lifts and reinforced infrastructure for bariatric patients. Room numbers have been replaced by electronic devices that can hold more patient information; and patient calls will go direct to a nurse rather than a central unit.
Parcells pointed to the 18-bed observation unit as one of the major changes, describing it as "a game-changer." Situated next to the existing emergency department, it is designed to accommodate those who don't need full admission, but might need a 24-hour hospital stay for tests and observation. It will be run by emergency physicians with their own staff and is intended to relieve pressure on the emergency room.
Spaciousness and room for expansion are also hallmarks of the new building. "Health care is all about flexibility," said Peter Glagola, a Riverside spokesman. The corridors are super-wide, the elevators roomy, the operating rooms up to doubled in size, and the ceiling space massive to accommodate 530,000 feet, or about 100 miles, of cabling. The two visible stories of the new building are just a few feet shorter than the original 50-year-old five-storey Tower. A massive basement houses a back-up generator, a sterile processing unit, and a pharmacy that employs a carousel system that can hold 7,000 medications.
Two of the new operating rooms are designed specifically for the DaVinci robot used for minimally invasive surgeries and another two are built to accommodate the bypass pumps and additional staff necessary for open heart surgeries. Niceties for surgeons include a softer floor to make long hours of standing easier, LED lights that don't heat up, extra room cooling capability, a Bluetooth system for communication, and a docking station for their iPods. Ceiling-mounted equipment allows patients to be positioned in different ways and numerous screens can bring up a store of information as well as allow videoconferencing. Removable ceiling panels allow for easy changes and adaptability in each room's set-up.
For both safety and efficiency, atomic clocks are synchronized throughout the building. There's also a fully electronic pneumatic tube system that will be used primarily to deliver lab specimens and medications between floors. "It's not your grandparents' pneumatic tube system. There's no paperwork. You can track it -- who sent it, where it is in the system and when it arrived. There's a record of it," said Parcells. "It's all very high-tech and whiz-bang."
Want to tour
What: Public tours and refreshments
When: 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 13
Where: Pavilion Main Lobby, Riverside Regional Medical Center, 500 J. Clyde Morris Blvd., Newport News.
Want a job
Riverside will be hiring to fill between 50 and 75 jobs for the Pavilion, which opens Jan. 28. It is also hiring for 200 to 250 jobs for Riverside Doctors' Hospital Williamsburg, which is slated to open at the end of April 2013..
Interested candidates can go to http://www.riversideonline/careers to apply.
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