PUEBLO COUNTY – Parkview Medical Center in Pueblo is about to undergo a major expansion.
The plan is to double the size of the emergency department which is a huge need right now for the Steel City and beyond.
On Friday, staff members said the project will be somewhat of an inconvenience for awhile. The entrance of the emergency department will be moving and security will be ramping up.
Vince Velasquez, assistant vice president of support services, said, “We’re seeing a lot of patients and we need to expand the ED. It’s well overdue.”
The amount of traffic in the emergency department at the medical center has been growing over the last few years.
Public Relations Specialist Jeff Tucker said, “We saw 82,000 patients through our emergency department last year, that includes Pueblo West.”
Tucker said a lot of it has to do with Pueblo’s continued growth and that Parkview is the only level two trauma center south of Colorado Springs.
Velasquez said, “We’ve had a big influx of patients for several years coming in…it’s a continued need for Pueblo…it’s just longer wait times. That’s probably the biggest issue that we deal with.”
The hospital is hoping to fix that problem by making the emergency department bigger. The construction of a new waiting room, where the ED entrance currently is, will be the first phase. While work is being done on that emergency room patients will be asked to go to the main entrance of the hospital.
Tucker said, “We’re going to have emergency room personnel stationed at the entrance to recognize those issues and get those patients back to the emergency room quick, fast, and in a hurry.”
Besides expanding the ER, new security measures will also be implemented.
Tucker said, “About a week from Monday we plan on installing a metal detector inside the main entrance of the hospital. That is going to be one of three that will eventually be installed here at the hospital.”
The hope is that it will deter people from trying to bring in weapons or drugs.
Tucker said, “We’re going to have better, safer, more efficient care for Pueblo and that’s what we’re aiming for.”
Staff members said nothing will change for those patients arriving to the hospital via ambulance. They will still go to the ambulance bay area.
The expansion is expected to be completed in 2020.