GRMC announces plans for expanded surgery center
Renovations are on the way at Graham Regional Medical Center. GRMC CEO Shane Kernell outlined a plan to transform the former Women’s Center into the Surgery Center of Graham during a joint meeting with the GRMC Board of Trustees and the hospital’s doctors Dec. 9. The estimated cost is $3.8 million, which Kernell says will be funded without additional taxes or debt.
The former Women’s Center, built in 2007-2008, is the newest constructed hospital building on the campus and closed in 2015. Most recently, the building has been used for in-patient COVID-19 patients. Kernell told doctors that outpatient surgeries have been a recent source of growth and are part of the hospital’s plan for the future.
“So the strategic plan for the hospital, for the foreseeable future, is surgeries, and our clinic,” Kernell said. “Those are two growth areas and surgery, by far, is where you want to be for a hospital. (...) The overall trend is a decline in patients in beds as inpatients. Surgery volume, (is)quite the opposite story. (From) 2017 to current, we’ve gone up every single year. The one year that was an anomaly was ’19 to ’20. We all kind of know and understand what that was, but it did fall. (...) I know a lot of hospitals that just plummeted off the cliff with their surgeries from ’19 to ’20, due to Covid (...) We look like 2019, we saw 21% increase that year, this year, a 27% increase. Now that’s largely outpatient, which most surgeries are going more and more toward outpatient, even some of your total joint procedures. Doctor Hay, can attest to that.”
Kernell said the Surgery Center of Graham will provide the community with a state-of-the-art facility for surgical needs well into the future and meet the demands of a growing community. Initially intended for general and orthopedic surgeries, the unit will grow to more specialties as the need is anticipated. There are multiple phases to this project and is expected to take one-to-two years to implement. Phase one, Kernell said is staffing and equipment.
For the rest of the story, see the Dec. 25 edition of The Graham Leader.