By Ken Hutchenrider Jr., FACHE
Methodist Richardson Medical Center
It doesn’t seem possible, but we can see the light at the end of the construction tunnel. A little more than one year ago, I brought you the exciting news that Methodist Richardson Medical Center was breaking ground on a $120 million expansion. Thanks to great weather and a dedicated team, I’m pleased to tell you that we are significantly ahead of schedule and planning for a May 1, 2014, opening — at least three months sooner than originally planned. This is great news for the community and for our employees.
I’m gratified to see that the hundreds of hours we invested in planning the design and functionality of the new space is coming to fruition. One area that received attention was employee work spaces. Our goal is to provide a healing environment that makes work more efficient and enjoyable. I think we’re achieving that in several ways:
- Lounges on the nursing unit have open-air balconies so employees can take a break, step outside, and enjoy a breath of fresh air away from their work area.
- No-wax floors end the dilemma of finding a good time to wax them. In addition, by eliminating wax we are creating a healthier environment for staff and patients.
- We’ve used lots of glass in patient rooms and throughout the facility to give it an open, soothing, organic, and spacious feel.
- The bistro design in our cafeteria offers single seating as well as seating areas that are perfect for mini-meetings within the cafeteria itself. Outside seating will be available so employees, volunteers, and visitors can enjoy a meal alfresco.
Throughout the design and construction process, our employees have provided valuable insight. At the beginning of the project, we built a mock patient room. We invited the staff to test the room design. They weren’t shy about sharing their feedback, and we made changes accordingly. Based on their input, we lowered the television to make it easier for patients to view, changed the lighting to a more restful level, and moved electrical
By the end of the year, we will begin installing technology throughout the building. Our new biplane catheterization lab will take a step forward with upgraded electrophysiology capabilities to allow us to care for patients who have electrical dysfunctions of the heart. This phase of construction also includes installation of the new nurse-call system. Nurses will carry individual phones, making it easier to identify exactly where they are at any time. The call system will also be programmed to ring at 5 minutes before the hour to remind nurses to do patient rounds.
Needless to say, as the building has taken shape, the excitement and enthusiasm in the community has been building. The residents of Richardson and surrounding communities of Plano, Wylie, Murphy, Garland, Rockwall, and Sachse are looking forward to having this wonderful new facility on the east side of Richardson. We expect to treat around 5,000 inpatients during our first full year of service in the new building.
We will be adding approximately 100 new employees representing jobs across the organization. We expect to begin hiring after the first of the year. Not only will this provide expanded health care capabilities to the community, it will also boost the local economy.
If you’re looking to expand your career with a growing health care organization, then it’s time to choose Methodist Health System. Learn more by visiting Jobs.MethodistHealthSystem.org.
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