Medical Center marks six busy months

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Patient use exceeds expectations

By Pat Faherty

The Capital Regional Medical Center – Gadsden Memorial Campus has marked six months of service and experienced a surprising demand for care since opening in June.

 During that time, the facility has surpassed expectations and filled a health care void left in the community when Gadsden County Hospital was closed in 2005.
“Capital Regional Medical Center is committed to the care of everyone in our region and we believe that healthcare needs should be met on a local level,” says Bud Wethington, President and CEO of Capital Regional Medical Center.  “We were proud to step up and fill this need. Our dedication to the Gadsden County community is evident in the high-quality care provided at the Gadsden Memorial Campus.”

Hospital officials used the milestone occasion to list the facility's accomplishments.

Since its opening, the Gadsden Memorial Campus has:
·         Averaged more than 50 patients per day.
·         Served more than 8,300 patients.
·         Performed more than 4,500 radiology and lab tests.
·         Reduced Gadsden County EMS 911 emergency transports to Tallahassee hospitals by 50 percent and expects to save $1 million in transport costs over a 12-month period.
·         Returned more than $100,000 to the community in the form of payment for utility services, directly supporting Gadsden County, while purchasing local goods and services.
·         Added more than 35 jobs in Gadsden County.
·         Received a “tobacco-free workplace” designation from the American Lung Association.

"Before the Gadsden Memorial Campus opened, our EMS personnel had to take patients to Tallahassee for treatment,” says Chief Don Crum, Gadsden County Emergency Medical Services.  “Not only was this very dangerous for those experiencing life-threatening emergencies, it was also very expensive.  Now, we have a full-service emergency facility in our community that can address patient needs without a 30-minute drive.”

On Nov. 1, the Campus added a 24-hour on-site ambulance and  three EMS staff to the facility, so patients requiring advanced care can be stabilized prior to transport to Tallahassee.  Soon, the facility will also add a helipad to accommodate emergency helicopters.

Wethington said the facility has been working our fine and the only real surprise in the first six months was that they did not think it would be as busy as it has been. As to how the facility will develop in the future has yet to be decided, but he said they plan to be there a long time.

He said there has not been any reluctance on the part of residents to use the facility and patient surveys show a  94 to 98 percent satisfaction rate. Patients are also learning that the Campus offers more than just emergency care with its state of the art medical technology for CT scans, X-rays and ultra-sounds.

He added that the local facility has also taken on the look and feel of the Capital Regional Medical Center

For more information about the Capital Regional Medical Center – Gadsden Memorial Campus, or to find out what the current average ER waiting time is, visit www.capitalregionalmedicalcenter.com.