Hoboken University Medical Center (HUMC) unveiled a new Emergency Department on Monday and hospital administrators are banking on it to help keep HUMC viable.
“The area’s most advanced Emergency Department is now in Hoboken,” said HUMC CEO Spiros Hatiras, who recently took over the helm of the city-backed institution. “Patients can expect a new standard in emergency care with a facility that is not only larger, but also better and faster, in that we’re also the first hospital in the nation to adopt some cutting-edge clinical practices.”
The 17,000-square foot facility at Fourth Street and Willow Avenue includes 30 new treatment rooms, including dedicated sections for pediatric treatment, women’s services, orthopedics, mental health, and two trauma rooms for serious injury.
The cost of the structure was roughly $11.5 million, according to Hatiras, less costly than the $13 million budgeted for the project. HUMC’s Auxiliary Board donated $1.2 million of that funding.
Doctor designed, nurse approved
“This Emergency Department is unique because it was designed with the input of doctors, nurses and ER techs – the people who actually work in the ER,” said Director of Emergency Services George Saffran, M.D. “We’ve been able to perfect the layout and function of the space, which allows us to streamline the admitting process, reduce waiting times, and improve our staff’s ability to care for patients.”
Hospital officials said a 10 to 15 percent increase in patients is expected.
Bringing in more patients
Hospital officials said a 10 to 15 percent increase in patients is expected since their ER capacity has increased to 70,000 patients per year. The hospital has been caring for 32,000 emergency patients per year.
The hospital operated with an $8 million loss last year, and officials are expecting the increase in ER patients to stabilize their budget this year.
The city has backed a $52 million dollar bond to keep the hospital afloat. Last year the hospital took some of the funding earmarked for building improvements and used them to fund operating costs.
HUMC officials are working to cut 15 percent of the budget to try and break even in 2009, despite the expected 15 percent increase in revenue as a result of the upgraded emergency room.
Timothy J. Carroll may be reached at email@example.com.