Eastside Medical Center Expands Healthcare Offerings with New Patient Tower

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Eastside MedicalFor more than 30 years, Eastside Medical Center has provided unparalleled care to Gwinnett and surrounding counties. The Snellville-based hospital houses 310 beds and offers a broad range of services such as emergency, medical, robotic surgery, obstetrics/NICU, oncology, behavioral health, and diagnostic services.

This past January, Eastside revealed another significant milestone in their healthcare offerings by opening the 92,000-square-foot, three-story patient tower. This new tower features top-of-the-line technology with nine of the 10 operating rooms online now (the tenth to be completed by October 2013), a surgical ICU/surgical step-down unit, and the addition of 48 beds in two units. The service expansion includes the recent addition of vascular, ENT, and colorectal surgeons and capabilities.

“Eastside was approved for 79 additional beds from the state. We decided to complete the construction in two phases. For the first phase, we built a three-story surgical tower that would give us 48 beds. The ultimate plan for the tower is have a total of five floors with all 79 beds,” said CEO Kim Ryan.

The first floor consists of the hospital entrance, lobby and operating rooms, while the second and third floors each have 24 beds with all private rooms.

State-of-the-Art Patient Rooms
The new patient tower introduces many innovative features to improve patient care. All beds are universal and meet state requirements for ICU beds. The private patient rooms are “adjustable acuity,” which means that a patient could remain in the same room regardless of the level of care required.

In a traditional hospital setting, when a patient needs to receive additional medical attention, they would, in most cases, need to be moved to a different floor. This means the patient would have to be resituated into a new room with new nurses, which could take a good amount of time. When a patient has a change in status, every minute is critical. This is the benefit of the adjustable acuity rooms.

Dr. Takki Momin, a vascular and endovascular surgeon, comments on the ease of serving his patients in the new tower. “The patient rooms [in the tower] are exceptional and each room can be converted to ICU at a moment”s notice. For me, this is very exciting because the status of many of my vascular patients can change on an minute-by-minute, hour-to-hour basis.”

In addition to the patient rooms, there is a nurse sub-station between every two rooms. This gives caregivers a direct line of sight into both rooms and their patients. There is also a bank of elevators within the operating suite to transport patients in the tower, eliminating patient exposure to other areas of the hospital.

One of Two Hybrid Operating Rooms in the State
A unique feature to both Gwinnett and Eastside is the tower”s hybrid operating room equipped with imaging capability for vascular surgery. One of two hybrid operating rooms that exist in Georgia, this room is a key asset for Dr. Momin to pinpoint problem areas during a surgical procedure.

“A hybrid operating room means it can function as both an operating room and interventional radiology suite for minimally invasive therapies, such as angioplasty and stenting. So if during the course of an operation, we find that the patient could benefit from minimally invasive technique, we can quickly use the suite”s robotic arm to take images of the area that needs additional attention,” said Momin. “It allows me to meet my
patients” specific needs by switching effortlessly between open operations and minimally invasive techniques, depending upon what is best for the patient.”

The room also minimizes the amount of radiation that a patient would receive during their operation, both of which can have detrimental side effects.

Another benefit of the hybrid operating room is that it houses the appropriate equipment to perform necessary pre-op scans. “This room allows you to bring patients directly into the operating room without having to stop by radiology to complete pre-op scans,” says Ryan “The equipment can rotate 360 degrees and provide CT-like images of specific anatomy, therefore supplanting the need for a conventional CT scan. This is important because patients at high-risk need their surgery completed as quickly as possible.”

Complete Focus on Patient Care
With the addition of the patient tower, Eastside continues to create a culture that”s focused solely on an exceptional patient experience. All the tower”s patient rooms are configured for comfort and include the latest innovations for the clinical staff to offer an optimal level of care.

The rooms are very spacious and equipped with beds that rise up to a full-seated position, a recliner and a sofa. “Our rooms were design with the patient”s best interests in mind. Each room has a couch that pulls out into a bed, so loved ones can stay the night, if they would like.” says Ryan

Accessibility to physicians and staff is another element Eastside provides for their patients. Each of the tower”s rooms has a system that allows patients to send requests or messages through their TV, including everything from changing room temperature to rating their care. A staff member will receive the message immediately on their iPhone and fulfill the need.

“Eastside”s patient tower is really a fantastic place if you ever need to be in a hospital,” comments Momin.

The Future of Eastside
Eastside”s parent company, HCA, has funded the phased expansion projects over a four-year period. These include an expanded emergency room, the addition of a third medical office building, and the patient tower. Further renovations will extend through September 2013, encompassing the hospital”s dining area, laboratories, plant operations, and existing patient rooms.

With all the expansions and renovations happening on the hospital”s campus, one of Ryan”s main goals is to continue encourage more Gwinnett residents to seek healthcare services closer to home. “In Gwinnett, 50 percent of patients go inside the perimeter for their care. I hope to change that number over time, so that more services can be provided within our community and patients will spend less time traveling into the city,” says Ryan.

For more information, call 770-979-0200

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