The new ED doubles current capacity and has transformed the facility to meet leading industry standards, providing:
- 13 exam rooms (8 private acute care rooms, 5 dedicated behavioral health rooms)
- A new Main Lobby, covered entrance and a new Radiology Dept.
- One floor of medical office space (Primary/Specialty Care)
- One floor of Behavioral Health Services
Our Fulfilling Our Promise campaign addressed Athol Hospital’s necessary upgrades including new Emergency and Outpatient Departments.
The Emergency Department (ED) was constructed in 1953, with accommodations acceptable for the times. Today, we care for over 12,000 patients a year throughout the North Quabbin region. The needs of the region, as well as healthcare standards, have shifted significantly over the past 50+ years, with a greater emphasis on behavioral health and the need to improve privacy, infection control and wait times.
Meeting the emergency healthcare needs of our growing area in an outdated facility had caused over-crowding and limited patient privacy, with many patients housed in the hallway awaiting an available room. Patient rooms are separated by curtains rather than walls, further challenging privacy.
It was difficult for medical staff to work around a critical patient without bumping into equipment or each other. Because the Emergency Department lacked a separate area for behavioral health patients, frequently these close quarters were exacerbated.
The new Emergency Department alleviates these conditions, replacing curtains with walls to provide adequate privacy, improving infection control by improving air circulation, creating a comfortable area for family members and allowing for dedicated behavioral health observation rooms.
Medical Office Building renovations have facilitated expansion of current space to better accommodate patients and outpatient services. The infrastructure is enhanced with the latest technologies. Approximately 13,330 sq. feet of state-of-the-art handicapped accessible new space are now developed. Services such as audiology, cardiology, diabetes care, oncology, physical therapy and speech therapy are critical to the longevity of Athol Hospital. Our state-of-the-art facilities attract physicians to practice medicine in our rural community; which remains a longstanding challenge.
"We are very proud of the exceptional care provided at Athol Hospital. We want to ensure that we continue to meet the healthcare challenges faced by our patients, and provide the facilities and level of care our communities deserve."
Doug Starret, Cheney Castine, David Hillis
Tri-chairs of Athol Emergency Department/MOB project