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Sentara announces services for new Halifax acute care hospital

Sentara Health is announcing key services that will be available at the new acute care hospital that will replace the current Sentara Halifax Regional Hospital.

The new hospital will have inpatient medical and surgical beds, cardiac catheterization suite, an emergency department, an intensive care unit, imaging services, surgical suite, procedural room, laboratory, pathology, pharmacy, rehabilitation, respiratory therapy and several other departments.

The hospital will also continue to offer anesthesiology, cardiology, emergency medicine, endocrinology, gastroenterology, general surgery, gynecology, hematology and oncology, hospice, infectious disease, internal medicine, nephrology, orthopedics, pathology, pulmonology, radiology and rehabilitation.

“The current hospital is 70 years old and will not sustain us going into the future, and unfortunately is failing us now from a facilities perspective. There are several thousand square feet of the facility that are not in use today, which is costly and inefficient,” said Dr. James Priest, chief medical officer for Sentara Halifax Regional Hospital. “The new hospital will allow us the opportunity to align the space for the services needed and modernize our building. Investing in a new hospital will allow us to focus on our long-term clinical capabilities and bring in innovative medical technologies – which is a smarter investment for our community.”

Volumes have been shrinking at the hospital for years due to a declining local population, changes in rural healthcare, recruitment and retention challenges, as well as inpatient stays shifting to outpatient services nationwide, according to Sentara officials.

The decision was made to build a new facility due to repairs needed to fundamental operational systems, like the power plant and HVAC systems, that would require $50 million or more to replace the current building without the ability to expand services within the current facility. The cost to fully renovate the current facility would be more than $180 million.

“Even if it were feasible, with the changes to the demographics of the community over the past several years along with predicted future population decline, the region is not large enough to support a facility at the current size,” officials said in a release.

Source: WSLS News 10

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