Status report:
CMC revitalization project
Margaret Richman photo
Calumet Medical Center’s new main entrance has changed significantly, but the even more impressive changes to the medical center can be seen inside. A grand opening is planned for July 25.

Patients and visitors of Calumet Medical Center (CMC) in Chilton have witnessed the progress of construction over the past year.

As the revitalization project nears the finish, CMC is eager to share the highlights of each renovated area with the community they serve and invite the public to their Grand Opening Celebration on July 25.

Commitment to care for the community’s health care needs well into the future is the foundation of CMC’s revitalization project. CMC was constructed in 1955 as Calumet Memorial Hospital from the generous philanthropic support of the surrounding area along with the Hill-Burton Federal Fund. Once again the community came together and recognized the continued value of a critical access hospital providing health-care close to home. Businesses, service groups, private donors and the internal backing of the CMC administration, managers, board, physicians, and associates pledged their financial support of the $10.4 million project that addressed needs in infrastructure, specialty outpatient services, physical medicine and rehabilitation, cardiac rehabilitation, surgery, and patient access.

The CMC emergency department was renovated in 2006 but the main campus had not undergone a major renovation in its near 60 years of service. The first phase of the project, replacement of the infrastructure or power plant, took place in 2013. The facility had been operating on the original boiler, heating and cooling system where energy efficiency was lacking and replacement parts custom built costing the facility almost a quarter of million dollars to maintain over a two-year period.

Power plant savings

CMC Director of Support Services Jenny Derks has overseen the renovation project. “The new power plant has now been in operation for 1½ years. Energy savings have been estimated at $68,000 in the first six months post commissioning and emergency maintenance nonexistent. Although our original power plant from 1955 exceeded its useful life after 55 years of performance, updating this infrastructure will enhance the facility’s sustainable performance for years to come. We are pleased that our new power plant has the capability for future growth on the CMC campus. With added advancements such as a new reversed osmosis water filtration system, CMC can expect to experience extra mileage out of their existing equipment. The demineralized water is an added bonus not only for the new OR equipment such as scopes, but also better for the new boiler system in general,” Derks said.

Specialty Outpatient Services was the first clinical area to complete renovation and began serving patients in October. Specialty Services is located in the center of the hospital campus and includes urol-ogy, neurology, and oncology. The newly renovated area offers four examination rooms, a chemotherapy/infusion room, a private wheelchair accessible bathroom, and a provider dictation room. The area is reflective of the continuous expansion of outpatient services. In 2009, CMC had 16 visiting specialists whereas seven out of ten CMC patients today receive outpatient services from one of 31 specialists providing consult, treatment, and/ or surgery.

Cassie Buechel, CMC supervisor of specialty services, said the patients greatly appreciate the newly renovated space. “One of our renovated areas includes the chemotherapy/infusion room which accommodates 10 patients and has room for additional chairs for family members who wish to accompany their loved one while they receive treatment. The room also has two large windows that overlook our green space courtyard and offers additional privacy that we previously did not have since we were in quarters that were constructed for inpatient services of the 1950s. Our new location is now catered solely to outpatient treatment in a more relaxed setting with the comfort of patients in mind,” Buechel said.

The second renovated clinical area completed is the Surgery Center. Opened in February, the center includes an operating room and pre-operative and recovery rooms. The new OR features a larger space with the latest technology in lighting and a boom which is equipped to provide a 3D video system for laparoscopic procedures. The Surgery Center also includes a Post Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU) with two bays or the ability to treat two patients at a time and eight new pre-op and recovery rooms. The self-contained center allows for a private and expedient transfer of patients to and from surgery as well as a sterile corridor.

Short stay surgery patients will be assigned to the same pre and post care

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