As Sebasticook Valley Health (SVH) looks forward to its 50-year anniversary as a healthcare leader in central Maine in 2013, the hospital celebrated its latest milestone as it broke ground on a $9.5 million construction project to expand the hospital’s inpatient wing. With Congressman Mike Michaud as guest speaker, and various leaders from Eastern Maine Healthcare System (EMHS), invited community members, and SVH employees in attendance, SVH President and CEO Victoria Alexander-Lane and the SVH Board of Trustees officially kicked off the 18-month construction project. The construction will be managed by Cianbro Corporation.
When SVH opened in 1963, semiprivate rooms were commonplace. Today, the needs for private rooms for therapeutic care or end-of-life situations are vital for the comfort of patients and their visitors. SVH recognized this need after exhaustive interviews with community members and both national and regional market research.
“We owe it to our patients to provide a respectful and comfortable space for care,” explained Ms. Alexander-Lane. “Our expansion provides enhanced patient privacy, space for in-room therapy and equipment, and room for loved ones to visit with patients.” Currently two patients are assigned to an inpatient room, with adjoining bathrooms between two rooms, which often means as many as four patients – men and women – sharing one bathroom.
“The new inpatient rooms will show our commitment to the privacy and personal dignity of patients and visitors and provide more opportunities for rest and recuperation, larger space for better movement of patients, caregivers, and the equipment necessary for care, and reduce the possibility of infection,” stated Ms. Alexander-Lane.
Guest speaker Congressman Michael Michaud, an advocate for accessible healthcare for Mainers, spoke of the vision of the SVH leadership to embark on a hospital expansion during volatile economic times. “For a small hospital in central Maine to take on such an undertaking as this expansion, despite today’s challenges, speaks to the level of commitment SVH has for quality patient care. As the capital campaign materials proclaim, this expansion is truly the right thing to do.”
Letters from senators Olympia Snow and Susan Collins, and from state representative Chellie Pingree were read aloud before Board of Trustees chair Michael Hodgins spoke to the audience of over one hundred people.
“I have lived in this area all my life and have seen the growth of this hospital throughout most its first fifty years,” noted Mr. Hodgins. “It’s very exciting to be helping to guide SVH into its next fifty years, and I am extremely proud of that.”
Ground-breaking for the expansion begins this month, and is estimated to conclude in early 2013, according to project architects Brasford and Gorrie. Click here for more information about this expansion and ways you can help.
Shown: Ground-breaking for new hospital inpatient expansion project