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An older man in a white shirt and grey slacks is overlooking the new hospital equipment.
An older man in a white shirt and grey slacks is overlooking the new hospital equipment.

GMH to hold Grand Opening for Surgery & Radiology Center

Two years, nine months and one sales tax later, Grady Memorial Hospital is nearing a full recovery.

The hospital will have a public grand opening of the renovations to the hospital at 2 p.m. on Sunday, July 1.

"This year, for us at Grady Memorial Hospital and Five Oaks Medical Group, it is our independence day," Warren K. Spellman Grady Memorial Hospital CEO, said. "We are finally independent of the threats that our old surgical department was not up to code, and we are independent from the fear that we would not be able to continue to serve our communities."

In August 2015, the hospital had to close its surgery wing after the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services performed an audit and cited GMH for humidity issues.

In February 2016, Grady County voters passed a quarter penny sales tax to fund the new building.

The new 28,000 square foot addition reopened full surgical services on June 1.

The new main entrance and radiology departments will be ready for patient use after the State Department and Radiation Physicist review and inspect the premises on June 22, Warren K. Spellman, Grady Memorial Hospital CEO, said.

Due to the renovations, the emergency room, surgery center and imaging centers are closer together. In an emergency situation, a patient may need to travel between all three, Spellman said.

Moreover, the improvements allow for increased patient privacy. Patients en route to surgery may use a different elevator, there changing rooms in the imaging department and there is a separate space for mammography.

The new entrance features a much larger waiting area, a gift shop and a community room with multiple possibilities.

The re-opening will mean the hospital will be able to re-employ many of the staff who were reduced due to the closure of surgery, Spellman said.

"The hospital has remained one of the county's largest employer despite our past problems," Spellman said. "Before the operating rooms were closed GMH employed 458 people. Currently, that number is 380 full and part-time employees and growing, at GMH and Five Oaks Medical Center. Many former employees have come back to us after they had taken jobs elsewhere, but not all, and we still are needing circulating registered nurse staff, as we are hoping to increase our surgical team scope to keep up with the huge resurgence of elective cases from our surgeons. It will likely take a few weeks of operations before we return to our full scale operation." Spellman said.

"Now that we have built this, we can get back to saving lives using surgery, and this will return us to the path we were on in 2015 in that it will bring in new physicians that we need. There will be more people coming from out of town, so it will increase our local businesses, said Cathy Groseclose, Director of Nursing"

Spellman said the hospital staff looks forward to seeing a large turnout of the grand opening and expressed gratitude for the community's support.

"Everyone at the hospital is hoping the entire community comes out to see the new building on Sunday afternoon, July 1st. Independence Day. This is a building that everyone had a part to play to build, and we should all be proud of it and the community spirit it took to make this a reality," Spellman said.

Courtesy: The Express-Star