Friday, September 5, 2014
Georgetown Memorial Hospital has undergone a variety of changes – and the administration says they’re not done yet.
The newly-renovated lobby, mall and Black River Road entrance to the hospital were opened to the public on Sept. 3.
The exterior features new brick, signage, lighting, windows and a repaved parking area. Inside, new lighting and floors are among the most noticeable changes.
The reopening marks the completion of “Phase 1” of construction, a $22 million project.
But Ann Waters, vice president of operations and administration, said the changes are more than just cosmetic.
Reskinning the exterior of the building, adding a new roof, and replacing all of the electrical and plumbing infrastructure are also among the plans for the hospital renovation, some of which have already been completed in part.
“It will be brand new when we finish, just within the same walls,” she said, “except for the new addition of the surgical suites that will be in the back of the hospital.”
Waters said the construction crews will continue to work on the mall area next, along with redoing the cafeteria, the labor and delivery suites and a laboratory on the second floor.
With the Black River Road entrance complete, the hospital now has room to work on constructing its new entrance on Memorial Lane.
Waters said the Memorial Lane entrance will allow for expanded ambulance access that will feed into a newly-redone emergency department, additional customer parking, and may even include plans for a memorial garden.
The hospital is unsure how much the future projects will cost.
“We’re working on exactly what the cost will be for our next phases,” Waters said. The funding will most likely come from a variety of fundraising and bonds, she continued.
She explained the work is a much-needed improvement to the long-standing community structure.
“The hospital was opened in 1950, so we have a large investment here on this property and we are committed to the city of Georgetown and Georgetown County.
“We want to make sure that we have a state of the art, current facility that will serve our patients and population far into the future.”
She said so far, the work has been well-received by patients and staff.
“The staff is very excited, the community is very excited. We are just excited about doing it for the community.”