Event wraps completion of phase II expansion
TAVARES - As AdventHealth Waterman celebrates the completion of its $85 million phase II expansion, it will be opening the doors of a new pediatric ER on December 10.
“Before our new unit was built, the closest dedicated pediatric ER was in Ocala, Orlando and Gainesville. Knowing we cared for nearly 12,000 patients under the age of 18 in our emergency department last year, we wanted to develop a pediatric ER for families right here in Lake County that could be staffed 24-7. As part of a collaboration with AdventHealth for Children, the new ER’s clinical team is specially trained in pediatric care, including board-certified emergency physicians, nurses and child-life specialists, who ensure each patient’s emotional, development and psychosocial needs are met,” said Laura Perry, director of the emergency department at AdventHealth Waterman.
Since 2000, the population of Lake County has grown by nearly 50 percent, and it’s expected to grow by another 12 percent over the next four years, according to U.S. Census data.
“Caring for the additional 15,000 patients over our originally intended capacity was a strain, and we knew we needed to expand our ER to meet the needs of patients today, as well as plan for the growing need for emergency care in the future,” she said.
More than 80 percent of the hospital’s patients originate from the emergency department.
“While the pediatric ER is a new and important service, this expansion project is so much more than that. This construction project doubled the footprint of our ER and grew capacity from 35 to 58 beds, making it the largest ER facility in Lake County. This expansion project also improved privacy and patient flow within the ER and added a 12-bed area for minor care for adults, such as treating lacerations, broken bones or flu symptoms,” said Perry.
Patients in this area will receive rapid treatment, including physician evaluations and test results, and will be discharged to the comfort of their own home.
The hospital invites members of the community to come for the celebration, tour the pediatric ER and meet the medical team. In addition, family activities during the celebration will include free photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus, ornament crafts, a live nativity scene, and more. Open house hours will be from 5 - 7 pm.
In May, more than 700 community members joined AdventHealth Waterman to celebrate the completion of Phase I construction on the new four-story patient tower, dedicated to emergency care, women’s services, pediatrics, inpatient rehabilitation and future growth. Phase I grew AdventHealth Waterman from 269 beds to 287 beds.
This project is the second largest investment in a healthcare facility in Lake County’s history – since AdventHealth Waterman’s Tavares campus was completed more than 15 years ago.
The second floor of the patient tower is home to the 24-bed Center for Women and Children and includes gynecology, labor and delivery, postpartum care and inpatient pediatrics.
The third floor is still under construction and will soon bring a brand-new healthcare service to the Lake County community: a 12-bed inpatient rehabilitation unit that opens to patients on December 13.
The fourth floor is shelled for future growth. The patient tower was constructed to support an additional future expansion and could one day add two more floors, bringing the tower up to six floors.
The project was designed by Gresham, Smith and Partners of Jacksonville. Construction was completed by Robins & Morton of Orlando.