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Updates expected for area medical facilities

Dec. 31, 2012 @ 12:15 AM

Health care remains a crucial part of the Tri-State. Here is a look at some of the local medical facilities have on tap for 2013.

Huntington VA Medical Center

In spring 2013, Huntington VAMC will open a comprehensive Women's Health Clinic in a newly renovated three-story building located on the west end of the campus. The clinic will serve the medical center's 1,200 female patients.

Construction will be under way in fall 2013 to renovate the former Army Reserve Center located at the entrance to the VAMC campus. The renovations will allow for relocation of some administrative services, which will free up space in the Medical Center for the expansion of patient support services.

Another project scheduled to begin in Spring 2013 is the expansion of ambulatory care services on the second floor of west wing. This project includes renovation of 10,000 square feet of space for primary care.

Other future projects incldue: renovation of the surgical suite including new operating rooms; a new dialysis unit; and a renovation project for the emergency room.

Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine

The school is expected to provide new pediatric medical services, including recruitment of specialists like a pediatric bone specialist, pediatric surgeon, pediatric allergist and immunologist and an adolescent gynecologist. These services will complement the new Hoops Children's Hospital.

There are also plans to expand research at the Edwards Comprehensive Cancer Center and the Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine, which will include studies of the cell, heart and improved care for high-risk pregnancy.

The school also wants to enhance scholarship opportunities as well as expand medical student volunteer services for the homeless.

Marshall University School of Pharmacy

The school will continue its three-step accreditation process, which is in pre-candidate status. The next step is candidate status. The Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education review team is scheduled to visit the school in spring 2013. The final step is full accreditation which occurs when the first class graduates.

The school is also working on the development of memorandums of understanding and affiliation agreements with regional colleges and universities to assist in the recruitment and enrollment of students.

Cabell Huntington Hospital

Construction began on the new Hoops Family Children's Hospital will continue through 2013, which includes a new entrance, new elevator and reconstruction of the hospital's 5th floor Pediatric Unit and Pediatric Intensive Care Unit. This will create 35 private patient rooms for sick children. The cost of the completed project will be more than $12 million.

The Cabell Huntington Hospital Burn Intensive Care Unit will expand from four beds to six beds and relocate to the hospital's fourth floor in a $1.8 million project that will enhance the specialized unit to treat patients with burns.

Cabell Huntington Hospital will be providing coronary angioplasty in the hospital's Cardiac Cath Lab for patients experiencing an acute life-threatening cardiac condition such as a heart attack.

St. Mary's Medical Center

In January, St. Mary's Regional Heart Institute will celebrate 34 years of providing heart care. A special event is planned form 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 12, called Healthy Heart University that offers many free and discounted heart screenings. It will be in the St. Mary's Outpatient Center. Call 304-526-6029 for more information.

Also in January, construction will be completed on a new helicopter hanger and crew base for Air Evac Life Team Medical Helicopter Service on the Ironton campus. This will provide 24 hour, seven days a week service on the Ironton campus. The Ironton campus will also mark its first year in operation in July.

The hospital also will mark the 1 year anniversary of the St. Mary's Total Woman program in May. More than 3,000 women in the Tri-State have already joined the program that gives them easier access to health information and services in the community.

St. Mary's Medical Center Outpatient Rehab will relocate in the spring or summer to St. Mary's Fifth Avenue Campus. This relocation and expansion will offer easier access for patients. The new St. Mary's Outpatient Rehab Center will be located adjacent to the Marshall University School of Physical Therapy at the St. Mary's Center for Education and it will allow both programs to work together to together more closely.

The hospital is also starting a new Huntington Campus Beautification Project that will also add more green space around its facilities. Other improvements include completion of construction on a new environmentally friendly heating system/boiler plant, which is a multi-million dollar investment to replace 60-year old heating system. It includes efficiency and pollution control systems.

King's Daughters Medical Center

King's Daughters is expanding its services to include a major new facility in Portsmouth which will open in early 2013.

Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital

The hospital will offer craniotomy and da Vinci surgical services. Also, Bellefonte Physician Services and Bellefonte Physician Services are recruiting new physicians.

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