Construction continues on project to increase bed count, expand specialized care areas and convert hospital to all private rooms.
Ocoee, FL — Health Central Hospital marked a major milestone in the construction of its ongoing expansion project earlier this month with a “topping off” ceremony. Hospital leadership, elected officials and leaders from the West Orange community were in attendance to witness the final beam being lifted by crane and placed atop the ongoing construction.
“The topping off ceremony signifies completion of a major phase of this expansion project,” said Greg Ohe, Health Central Hospital president. “While there is still more construction work to do, this event gives our community partners an opportunity to visit the site and see how far we’ve come in the months since we first broke ground.”
Part of the ceremony included a special red beam, which was placed in the hospital’s atrium for two weeks prior to the ceremony to give team members, patients and visitors from the community the opportunity to sign it.
“There is a very special reason that we chose to paint this beam red, because our mission is to be at the heart of the West Orange community,” said David Strong, president and CEO of Orlando Health. “I’m excited, not only for putting the top this steel today, but also for when this will open, which is in the fall of 2016.”
Last year, The West Orange Healthcare District (the district) awarded a $13.8 million grant to Health Central Hospital to expand. The grant was the second largest in the history of the district and funded 75 percent of the total expansion costs. Orlando Health funded the remaining 25 percent. Upon completion, the expansion project will add 40 rooms to Health Central Hospital, increasing its bed count from 171 to 211 and enabling the further development of specialized care.
As planned, the expansion is a four-story addition located on the north side of the hospital above the new emergency department. The project will align with floors two through five of the current building and will add a 10-room unit to each floor.
Twenty-two rooms will be used to enhance or develop the specialized care units at the hospital. Room additions on the second floor will be used for post cardiac and vascular catheterization patients and the continued expansion of technology in this area. The third floor will be home to a step-down unit for orthopedic/spine patients and an expanded spine program. The fourth floor is targeted for use as an oncology unit providing symptom management and supportive care for cancer patients. And the fifth floor will be used for pre and post general surgery patients with chronic conditions.
“This community is growing at a rapid pace and needs services that we’re going to add such as cardiac care, spine program and individual patient rooms. Which, if you think about it, if you’re a patient or I am, I want an individual room,” Strong said about the expansion.
And there are health benefits to individual hospital rooms, according to West Orange Healthcare District Executive Director Tracy Swanson.
“This is huge in terms of providing higher quality care (for patients). It’s been proven that private-patient rooms improve the outcomes of patients healing and overall wellness,” she said.
The remaining 18 rooms will be used to eliminate the hospital’s semi-private rooms. Construction of the 40-room expansion will complement construction of the hospital’s upcoming emergency department expansion.
“By coordinating the room and emergency department expansions and utilizing existing resources within the hospital, we will realize significant cost savings due to economies of scale realized by running parallel construction projects,” added Ohe.
Quick Facts about Health Central Hospital Expansion:
- Total cost of the expansion is $43.3 Million
- West Orange Healthcare District awarded two grants to Health Central Hospital for the current expansion project:
- $25 Million grant in 2013 to expand and consolidate current Emergency Department
- $13.8 Million grant in 2014 to construct four-story patient bed tower
- Expansion projected to be completed in Fall of 2016
- Expansion will more than triple the size of the current Emergency Department and add a four-story patient bed tower
- Current Emergency Department consists of:
- 42 emergency beds in two separate locations
- Approx 15,000 square feet in size
- Emergency Department after expansion:
- 52 emergency beds in on unified location
- Approx 52,000 square feet in size
- The new patient bed tower will add 40 new patient rooms
- Current number of patient beds: 171 After expansion: 211
- Expansion will allow Health Central Hospital to convert patient rooms from semi-private to all private room patient facility.
About Health Central Hospital
Health Central Hospital is a community hospital committed to excellence, service and community involvement. The hospital was acquired by Orlando Health April 1, 2012. The staff, coupled with the most advanced equipment and technology, ensures that all patients receive the safe, quality, personalized care they deserve. The 171-bed hospital facility features comprehensive medical care and has been the standard in health care in the community for more than 60 years.
The Health Central operation incorporates Health Central Park, a long-term care and rehabilitation facility, ExpressCare, an urgent care walk-in clinic, a state-of-the-art Wound Healing and Hyperbaric Medicine Center and extensive outpatient services, including cancer care by UF Health Cancer Center — Orlando Health. Health Central Hospital offers a wide variety of services to help patients achieve and maintain healthy lifestyles. Educational classes range from childbirth and diabetes education to specially designed classes for preparedness before and after orthopaedic surgeries. Health Central’s mission extends beyond exceeding expectations in health care and includes a commitment to enriching the community.