Memorial Hospital Expansion Begins

Aug 8, 2014

The expansion of Memorial Hospital will provide additional operating rooms, pre- and post-op areas, and Intensive Care Unit beds.
Credit Southern Illinois Healthcare

Memorial Hospital of Carbondale will get three new operating rooms, and nearly double the number of patients it can care for in the ICU, as a result of a new expansion project started Thursday.

The $52 million addition will add OR space, increase Intensive Care beds from 13 to 21, and expand the pre-and post-op care areas for patients and their families. SIH CEO Rex Budde says better patient care is the goal:
"Our patients deserve to have healthcare that's easily accessible, and that care be contemporary and of high quality."

Doctors and administrators break ground on Memorial Hospital's expansion project.
Credit Jennifer Fuller/WSIU Radio

High quality requires increased technology, which is putting a squeeze on surgeons in aging OR's. Chief Surgical Officer Doctor David Clutts says they need more space:
"The OR's that we moved into 14 years ago looked very spacious. Now they look quite crowded, because of all the equipment that we have to employ."
In addition, the added room will allow Memorial to accept more critically ill and injured patients. Hospital Administrator Bart Millstead says over the last several years, two-to-three patients were turned away each day simply because the hospital didn't have enough ICU space.

The expansion is expected to be complete in early 2017.