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Takoma Hospital Debuts New Surgical Center As Part of Multi-Million Dollar Renovation Project
GREENEVILLE – Takoma Adventist Hospital debuted its new surgical center this week as part of the third phase of a multi-million dollar renovation project. The surgical center, previously located on the third floor of the hospital, was relocated to a new, single-story addition on the first floor.  The surgical center now features four operating rooms instead of two, and is conveniently located alongside the existing Emergency Center, laboratory, and imaging services.

      The new addition also features a renovated entrance, an expanded gift shop and several patient business offices, including Admissions, Pre-Admission Testing and Financial Counseling.

      “This will tremendously enhance the convenience of our patients,” Carlyle Walton, Takoma’s president and CEO, said. “Patients will now be able to come in, register for their surgery, go to the surgical center to be prepped, have their surgery, and then recover – all on the same floor, in the same area.”

   The vacant rooms on the third floor will be used to create a “medical-surgical floor” with eight new, private patient rooms, Walton noted.

      “This means that all of our medical-surgical patients will now have private rooms, something I’m sure they will appreciate,” Walton said.

   Ground was broken on this 24,000-square-foot expansion to the surgical center in January 2003. This is the fourth renovation to Takoma’s present building, which was originally constructed in 1975 and opened for patients in 1976.

   Meanwhile, work continues on other sections of the 108-bed, not-for-profit hospital, as part of the overall $8 million expansion project.

   Ongoing work includes the renovation of an additional 8,000 square feet of the existing hospital to provide some new and upgraded services. For example, plans call for the addition of eight private medical-surgical rooms and three private labor-delivery-recovery rooms, as well as a new look and location for the hospital’s Birthing Center.

    As Takoma continues to expand to meet growing patient demand, work also is ongoing on two other projects – the construction of a new, $6 million medical office building, and a $1.5 Emergency Room Renovation and Expansion Project.

   Construction crews currently are working on completion of the medical office building on hospital grounds, facing East Vann Road.

   Steel erection has just been completed on the three-story building, and workers are now beginning work on the decking of each floor. The roof will go up in a couple of weeks, and the exterior brickwork should be finished by mid-August.

     “We should be occupying the building by March,” Walton said.

   This 45,000-square-foot building will house several physicians’ offices, including the Medical Group of Greeneville’s family physicians, as well as the internal medicine and surgical specialists. The office building also will include a dedicated women’s imaging center.

   A third, related project includes the hospital’s Emergency Room Renovation and Expansion Project. Once started in June 2005, this project will take about a year to complete.

   The Emergency Center expansion includes 11 new, private examination rooms, including designated suites for cardiac care, trauma, pediatrics, orthopedics, respiratory isolation, and chemical decontamination. The nurses’ station will be larger, and patient charting will be computerized.

   So far, more than half of the $800,000 goal has been raised in pledges and gifts from within the hospital sector. A public fund-raising campaign is now ongoing to support the rest of the project.

   The Emergency Center was last renovated in 1989. Since then, usage has outgrown the current facility.

   In 2001, there were more than 14,000 patient visits. In 2003, nearly 15,000 patients came to the Emergency Center, marking a trend of increased patient visits each year.

Some History

   Takoma’s extensive renovation project began 2 ½ years ago with the construction of a new parking area across from the hospital where several medical office buildings currently are located.

   In May 2002, Takoma celebrated the completion and opening of a new two-lane street, which extended Takoma Avenue to East Vann Road. The1,000-foot addition features a sidewalk, advanced lighting and underground utilities.

   In July of last year, Takoma moved its mobile MRI services into an in-house unit, which showcases a state-of-the-art GE 1.5 Tesla short and wide bore MRI. The unit is patient friendly for those who suffer from claustrophobia, and offer the benefits of an open MRI without sacrificing image quality.

   The new Imaging Center also features a GE LightSpeed 16 CT Scanner, the first CT of its kind in East Tennessee.

   Just as the building has grown, so has the list of services offered by Takoma. Programs such as the Inpatient Physical Rehabilitation Center and the Center for Sleep Disorders allow residents to get highly specialized care without leaving the community.

   The hospital’s Outpatient Physical Rehabilitation Center also has been relocated to downtown Greeneville, providing patients with a larger and more private facility. “We now offer our patients a warmer environment outside the hospital setting that is more conducive to healing,” Walton said.

   And, the hospital’s Wound Care Center specializes in treating patients who suffer from non-healing wounds.

   “Our institution continues to grow,” Walton noted. “We are in our 76th year of serving our community, and remain committed to our mission, which is to be an extension of the healing ministry of Christ and to show His love to all we are privileged to serve.”