Construction is progressing as scheduled on renovations to critical care service areas at Frederick Health Hospital, according to a hospital spokesman.
The $45.8 million Critical Care Project remains on budget, spokesman Josh Faust said, and involves three floors in one wing of the hospital, where the facility’s emergency department is currently located. The expansion is tentatively scheduled to be open to the public by late 2023, Faust wrote in an email last week.
As of last week, the “ReEnvisioning Critical Care Campaign” — an initiative started by the hospital in 2019 to raise money in support of the expansion project — had brought in more than $6.6 million, Faust wrote. According to the hospital’s website, the campaign’s goal is to raise $14.75 million. It will continue raising funds until 2024.
The hospital had been planning for the expansion since before the pandemic, Frederick Health Vice President of Development Robin Rose told the News-Post in an interview earlier this year.
“We realized that there was an increasing need for critical care services in the hospital. We’re a growing and aging community,” she said at the time. “COVID has reinforced what a great decision it was to expand our critical care.”
In a recent email, Faust summarized the components of the renovations. The hospital is redesigning and expanding its emergency department to integrate care, improve access and increase the number of patient care spaces, Faust wrote. According to the hospital’s website, of Maryland’s 47 hospitals, the ER at Frederick Health is the seventh busiest. It cares for an average of 200 adults and 40 children every day.
Enhancements to the emergency department will include a new triage area, a new pediatric unit located on the first floor that will provide care to children in need of emergency and inpatient care, a larger check-in area and an expanded emergency behavioral health unit that will serve both adult and pediatric patients.
The renovations also include an expansion of the hospital’s intensive care unit, which was last updated nearly 20 years ago and is often at capacity during periods of high demand, according to the hospital’s website. During the 2019 fiscal year, the unit cared for more than 3,500 people, or about eight to 18 patients per day.
The hospital is also enhancing its interventional cardiology unit to increase capacity of existing services and prepare for future growth, Faust wrote. This new unit is being built as a third-floor expansion, above the facility’s emergency department and intensive care unit.
Since the hospital is currently an active construction site, Faust advised patients and visitors to pay attention to posted signage, parking restrictions and detours.
According to the hospital’s website, since last September, patients and visitors have been advised to access the emergency department from Park Place instead of Toll House Avenue. All other patients and visitors should access the hospital from Emma Smith Way.