The announcement last week that Baptist Memorial Hospital-Union County plans a major expansion is good news for our community.
It signifies Baptist’s ongoing commitment to its hospital here and to improving health care for New Albany and the surrounding area.
Baptist announced that it plans a $12 million addition on the back side of the hospital that will provide an all-new emergency room with triple the number of exam rooms and two full-fledged trauma rooms.
The new emergency-room addition will be built to blend in with the hospital’s current red-brick look and will front onto Oxford Road, with its own parking area. To make way for it, the medical office of Dr. Harvey Mason and the hospital’s education building will be relocated.
Walter Grace, hospital administrator, said several factors led to the plan to expand, including the hope to speed up the wait times for emergency room patients. The current small emergency room treats about 25,000 patients a year.
Although the hospital has undergone several renovation projects, including the women’s center in 2008, the planned expansion is the first major change in its footprint since a new bed tower was added in 1993.
The hospital joined the Baptist hospital family in 1987. It originally opened in 1966 as Union County General Hospital.
We’re excited about the continued growth at Baptist. We have said many times how fortunate we are to have a non-profit hospital in the community focused on health care, rather than a private facility focused on profits.
We’re proud of our hospital and its commitment to improving our health.