La Grange Memorial Hospital plans emergency department upgrade

Jane Michaels
jmichaels@pioneerlocal.com | @janemichaels22
July 9 7 a.m.

Construction is expected to begin by year’s end or early 2015 on a 7,000-square-foot addition to the emergency department of Adventist La Grange Memorial Hospital.

The addition, coupled with the remodeling of an existing 14,000 square feet, is designed to update the facility for patients and medical personnel.

“Our nursing team provides outstanding care, and this project is about modernizing our emergency department to complement that level of care,” said Jim Today, director of facilities for the Adventist hospitals in La Grange and Hinsdale.

The addition will create a spacious new lobby and improve the flow of those visiting the hospital. The remodeling of existing space will create private emergency treatment rooms in place of spaces presently divided by curtains.

“That change is important from a patient perspective for comfort and satisfaction,” Today said. “Our nurses have been involved from the beginning in the design of the remodeling and how it’s going to work.”

In addition, the department’s new configuration will allow a fast-track approach for patients seeking emergency treatment in some nonlife-threatening situations.

“So if you’re in for a bump or a scrape, you’ll be able to get in and out quickly,” Today said.

The La Grange Village Board approved plans for the addition and renovation June 23, though two trustees questioned the streamlined process without a hearing before the village Plan Commission requiring neighbors to be notified.

Village staff members said the new plan would not substantially change the hospital’s impact or operation. A small amount of green space would be eliminated and the existing parking lot would be reconfigured to add six parking spaces, bringing the total to 1,435 spots.

Today said hospital officials followed the direction of the staff to acquire the proper approval and permits.

“We don’t expect there to be any impact,” Today said of the surrounding residential neighborhood. “We are not expecting any increases in volume. It’s just a matter of how to provide better care to people choosing La Grange for emergency care.”

The project will take about 18 months to complete and be broken into phases to minimize impact on patients and emergency department operations, he said.

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