Now at Gifford: Private Patient Rooms

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Front Page / Dec. 24, 2015 9:47am EST

Revamped Wing Opens On Time, On Budget


A milestone at Gifford Medical Center, the hospital opened a renovated wing earlier this month that allows for all patients to have single-bed rooms. (Herald / Tim Calabro) A milestone at Gifford Medical Center, the hospital opened a renovated wing earlier this month that allows for all patients to have single-bed rooms. (Herald / Tim Calabro) Following a six-month construction/ renovation project, Gifford Medical Center in Randolph last week opened 25 new, private inpatient rooms.

The new unit—located in what was formerly the wing housing Menig Extended Care, brings an upgraded standard of in-patient care unusual for a small community hospital in Vermont.

“It really is amazing that a health care facility of our size can provide this level of modern care to our community,” Administrator Joseph Woodin told a group of supporters gathered for an opening ceremony.

“The private-room model is now standard for new construction, but renovating older units is often expensive and takes years to complete, Woodin noted. “We began planning for this nearly 10 years ago, and have been able to complete our project on time, on budget, and with very little disruption for patients and staff.”

Private rooms reduce infections and stress, allow medical teams to bring technology and service directly to the bedside, and give patients the privacy they need for bedside consultations and family visits. This model of care has been shown to improve sleep, reduce stress, promote healing, and shorten hospital stays.

Careful planning, creative use of existing space, and input from staff throughout the construction process allowed the hospital to incorporate important upgrades to the new in-patient unit including:

• Two larger rooms, for patients unable to move easily, have overhead lifts that can glide into special in-room showers to accommodate bathing.

• Two isolation rooms with an enclosed entry can be used for patients with airborne infections.

• Two end-of-life care rooms open onto a courtyard garden and have adjoining space for visiting family members and friends.

• A physical therapy room with outside access allows recovering patients to practice getting in and out of cars before leaving for home.

• A new wound-care tub room.

• Centralized nursing station to promote teamwork and better communication.

• Comfortable family waiting room with furniture that extends to accommodate sleeping.

• A restful d├ęcor with paintings and photographs by local artists, gentle lighting, and hallway visitor hand-washing stations.

Years of Planning

The long-term strategic planning behind this project began nearly 15 years ago, when a new addition was built onto the hospital to house Menig Extended Care.

Because it was built to hospital (not nursing home) standards, that space could be converted into the new private rooms when the Menig Nursing Home relocated to Randolph Center last spring.

The new Menig Nursing Home and private patient rooms are part of a three-phase project supported by the “Vision for the Future” capital campaign. The last phase of renovations will create a new, centrally located Birthing Center, scheduled to open in June 2016.

“This is the largest fundraising effort in Gifford’s 112-year history,” said Gifford’s development director, Ashley Lincoln. “Thanks to generous community support and our dedicated volunteer campaign steering committee, we are $800,000 from our $5-million campaign goal.

To learn more about the “Vision for the Future” campaign, visit www.giffordmed.org/visionforthefuture.

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