ASHLAND – For the past several weeks, work on a new Emergency Department at King’s Daughters Medical Center has been proceeding mostly behind the scenes. Beginning Wednesday, Oct. 19, most of Bath Ave. between 22nd and 23rd Streets will be permanently closed as work ramps up on the new project, slated to open in late 2024.
“We are excited to begin construction on our new Emergency and Imaging facility which will serve the needs of our community well into the future,” said Chief Nursing Officer and Vice President for Patient Care Services Curtis Metzler, R.N., BSN.
Senior Director of Clinical Services Jason Blevins said, “We’ve listened to our team members and our community. There are several elements we are excited to have, including covered ambulance bay drop-off points, separate and secure access points for law enforcement and also for behavioral health patients, and a dedicated entrance for walk-in patients as well.”
“We are designing the facility to be easier for our patients,” Radiologist Candy Boykin, M.D., said. “We will have two CT scanners actually in the middle of the Emergency Department. We will be closer to our emergency patients than ever before.” The new Imaging Department location—including cardiac imaging, MRI, nuclear medicine, ultrasound and X-Ray—will be adjacent to the new Emergency Department.
Better patient flow
One of the main goals for the new Emergency Department is to keep lobby/waiting area volumes low. Most patients will be assessed in a triage area. Instead of returning to a lobby, they will proceed to a care initiation area. This is where a provider will see and assess the patient, and order tests. From there, the patient will move to either a “results pending” area, a care initiation area for needed treatment, and for patients who require more advanced care, they will move to a private treatment room.
Employing local contractors
The new Emergency and Imaging project is using local contractors as much as possible. King’s Daughters construction manager Mike Layne estimates more than 300 construction jobs with skilled tradespeople, both local and regional, will be working on the Ashland campus.
Construction projects often can bring parking issues. At King’s Daughters, a small fleet of shuttles has been transporting patients, visitors and KDMC team members to their destinations on the Ashland campus since August. Seven-day-a-week shuttle service for team members, patients and visitors runs every 10 minutes from lots J, K and L, from 5:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. A map of the Ashland campus and available parking areas is attached.
More parking changes are coming soon, including at one of the most visible spots on campus. Parking in front of Patient Tower II along 22nd Street is getting an upgrade. By reworking how the lot is laid out and removing the heart statue, 32 spots, including much-needed additional handicapped spaces, will be added. This change will bring a total of 89 parking spots at this location. While construction takes place, the flag poles in front of Tower II will be temporarily stored and later relocated near the new Emergency Department.
Facts about the new building
• Care initiation area with five exams areas, 12 results pending areas for low-acuity patients, and a stat lab for blood draws and EKGs
• Two trauma bays to accommodate up to four patients simultaneously, with direct access to in the in-department CT scanners
• Multiple procedure rooms
• Isolation areas: negative air pressure rooms beside a separate decontamination entrance, as well one near the main entrance
• Separate, covered ambulance entrance with triage bays
• Separate entrance for patients being brought in by law enforcement officers, and behavioral health patients
• Dedicated work area for EMS and law enforcement officers to complete documentation
• Specially equipped bariatric exam room
• Two separate decontamination entrances and isolation pod