Published on Wednesday, 30 November -0001 00:00
It looked more like a party than a hospital Sunday, April 18, as more than 800 people made their way through the new expansion at Meeker Memorial Hospital in Litchfield.
Accompanied by live music and snacks along the way, visitors toured several all-new departments in the hospital, areas that only patients and families would normally see.
The new entryway greets visitors with earthtones and open air. There's also a drive-up canopy entrance for all-weather convenience.
Just up the hall is a bright new gift shop that's well stocked. There's also a beautiful multi-denominational chapel that is open to all.
A new cafeteria provides nutritious food and snacks for employees. But it also allows patients to order what they want from a menu, and each patient can eat on his or her schedule rather than the kitchen's schedule.
Radiology has new equipment and a new look. It also has a new location. Rather than being buried on another floor, it's right up between the emergency room and surgery. And the E.R. has a drive-through garage for ambulances, and there's a helipad just a few steps away. This all makes it easier on patients and staff, and gets faster results.
Cardiac rehab has treadmills, stationery cycles, and more. Patients come several times a week and do supervised workouts to recover and gain strength. Just down the hall is a well-equipped physical rehab center.
Gone are shared hospital rooms. Each patient room in the hospital is a spacious, private room with a private bathroom. Birthing suites allow mothers to labor and deliver in the same room where she will stay with her new baby, and families can stay with her.
But the $26.5 million expansion of the county-owned hospital is more than a new color scheme and equipment. It's a total redesign that focuses on patient privacy and convenience.
Hospital staff guided tours through the various departments, and their pride was obvious everywhere.