May 20, 2019
Penn State Health's Milton S. Hershey Medical Center will open the first phase of an expanded emergency department project this Thursday, the hospital announced Monday.
The expansion began in 2017 and will feature four additional care initiation areas, four exam bays and six treatment rooms as part of the first phase. There is also a new main entrance, registration desk and waiting area.
“The expanded space in the Emergency Department will make it easier for our providers to give high-level care to patients in immediate need,” said Dr. Susan Promes, chair of emergency medicine. “Patients will get the same expertise they expect from Hershey Medical Center providers with an improved operational flow.”
In 2018, the hospital implemented a care model in which patients are first greeted at the registration desk by a nurse and then taken back to a care initiation area, where they are seen by a physician, as soon as possible. Once physicians have determined the level of care patients need, they are either taken to a room or sent back to the waiting room, where they are monitored by nurses and emergency technicians.
The second phase of the expansion project will include four more exam bays, two more treatment rooms, a dedicated sexual assault exam area, an expanded decontamination and infectious disease isolation area, and other support spaces.
In all, the expansion will add about 24,000 square feet of clinical and support space when it's completed next summer.
Hershey Medical Center has more than 70,000 annual emergency visits and is the only medical facility in Pennsylvania to be accredited as a Level 1 trauma center for both children and adults.