Hospital dedicates new ER, medical building

April McClain, director of inpatient nursing and the emergency department, gives the public a tour along the doctors' and nurses' station inside the new emergency room at Shenandoah Memorial Hospital in Woodstock on Wednesday. The new ER includes 17 private exam/treatment rooms and dedicated trauma and cardiac care rooms. Rich Cooley/Daily

WOODSTOCK – Shenandoah Memorial Hospital’s new emergency department and medical building were dedicated Wednesday with a ribbon cutting ceremony and public tours.

Shenandoah Memorial Hospital Vice President Lisa Heishman said the new 45,851-square-foot, three-story building cost $17.9 million, with $1.5 million raised by the Shenandoah Memorial Hospital Foundation. Construction began on March 15, 2015.

“The foundation did a fabulous job and the community response to raise $1.5 million was, I think, just absolutely incredible,” Heishman said.

Valley Health System President and CEO Mark Merrill said many people made the emergency department renovation possible and that it will serve the community for many years to come.

“We hope these emergencies are few and far between, but unfortunately as we learned on Sunday, emergencies happen at unplanned times,” he said as he asked the crowd to join in a moment of reflection for the Orlando, Florida, shooting victims.

Kim Shrum, clinical nurse manager for the Shenandoah Memorial Hospital Emergency Department, works on a computer inside the cardiac room. The new ER and medical building were dedicated on Wednesday. Rich Cooley/Daily

Rick Glading, chairman of the Shenandoah Memorial Hospital Board of Trustees, said the emergency department is a fantastic facility that was made possible with the support of the Shenandoah County community through donations and pledges.

When designing the new building, Heishman said patient privacy was a major focus.

She added that the new emergency department includes 17 private patient rooms with doors, which replace 12 patient treatment areas that were separated by curtains. It also holds dedicated rooms for behavioral health, decontamination and isolation, cardiac, trauma, OB/GYN, and law enforcement and security cases. A new outside covered awning was constructed for patient drop off to protect patients from the weather.

The medical building’s first floor holds the Emergency Department, which will open for business on June 28. The second floor holds the surgical specialties, including general surgery, obstetrics and gynecology, and urology, and opens on June 27. The third floor holds the medical specialties, including multi-specialty clinic, family and internal medicine and opens June 20.

The current emergency area will be renovated to become the hospital’s kitchen and dining area. Space not used on the ground floor will be used by maintenance and physical plant.

Computerized tomography tech Brian Drinkwater shows off the new CT scanner located inside the emergency room at Shenandoah Memorial Hospital. Rich Cooley/Daily

Audrea Wynn, president of Shenandoah Memorial Hospital medical staff, said the leadership at Valley Health and the well-trained staff in the hospital are critical to providing excellent care to patients.

“One of our guiding principals has always been to meet the needs of the community and strive to make this community better,” she said.

W. John Zehner, Jr., medical director of Shenandoah Memorial Hospital Emergency Department, said keeping the hospital relevant is important to caring for the community.

“We’re not big, but we’re good,” he said. “So spread the word far and wide, Shenandoah Memorial Hospital is alive and well and we’ll take care of you.”

Floyd Heater, vice president of the Valley Health southern region and president of Warren Memorial Hospital, said this has been the largest construction project at the site since the hospital was built in 1951.

Rows of chairs line the parking lot outside the new entrance to Shenandoah Memorial's Emergency Department as Floyd Heater, vice president of the Valley Health southern region and president of Warren Memorial Hospital, gives closing remarks Wednesday during the dedication of the emergency department and medical office building. Rich Cooley/Daily

“This is a big deal for our community,” he said. “It’s something our community can really be proud of.”

Contact staff writer Kaley Toy at 540-465-5137 ext. 176, or ktoy@nvdaily.com

Dr. W. John Zehner Jr., medical director of the Shenandoah Memorial Hospital Emergency Department, speaks during the dedication of the ER and medical building. Rich Cooley/Daily

Terry McClelland, a hospital volunteer, sits outside the new Emergency Room entrance during the dedication on Wednesday. Rich Cooley/Daily