"We have a few options. We may move the critical care beds across from the nurse's station in to provide more a isolation more isolated area. We've also looked at that area for out-patient services and we have other ideas that we'll explore," Rich Johansen, hospital CEO, said.
He said it's a relatively small space, around 500 to 700 square feet, and leaving it vacant until staff decides how to put it to optimum use shouldn't make much difference. None of the obstetrics department's employees will loose their jobs, as they were being pulled from other departments to fill in that unit whenever necessary.
The administrator said staff in the surgical unit has already increased. The new wing is expected to bring in more patients and staff will continue to increase as volume increases. Johansen also gave an update on the new wing construction progress.
"We're a week or two behind schedule, but now that we're under roof, we hope to make up some time. Fire retardant material has been sprayed inside, interior wall frames are being put in place and the bricks are about 60 to 70 percent complete. It ought to be mid to late June wen we're ready," he reported.
Brad Boring, project superintendent for Weddle Bros. Construction Co., Inc. of Bloomington, said the flame retardant material is Cementicious Fireproofing made of ground-up newspaper, other fibers and cement.
A new 800-square foot mechanical room at the northwest corner will house boilers, Boring said. Air handling and air condensing units will be placed on top of the roof of the new wing. The roof is made of EPDM fully-adhered rubber roof.
"The open areas above the windows and doors are where we're waiting on limestone to be milled. It'll come from Munroe County. BSA Architects from Indianapolis designed the masonry to include limestone and a diamond pattern in the bricks with dark brown and light tan bricks," Boring said.