Slidell Memorial Hospital unveils new critical care units

Published 9:32 pm Saturday, August 19, 2006

The finishing touches on Slidell Memorial Hospital’s two new critical care units are currently being completed on the hospital’s second floor. The new Surgical Intensive Care Unit and new Cardiac Interventional Care Unit will be unveiled at an Open House planned for the afternoon of August 15. Physicians, SMH team members, the SMH Board of Commissioners, SMH Advisory Board, local dignitaries and the public will have an opportunity to tour the two state-of-the-art units which will open to patients later this month.

The Surgical Intensive Care Unit (SICU) has been upgraded to six state of the art private rooms. An additional private twelve beds will be available in a unit primarily dedicated to cardiac interventional care (CICU) to support the cardiac catheterization and open heart surgery programs. The newly combined critical care units will feature a spacious waiting room as well as a private consultation area. In the CICU area, private rooms will accommodate family members of cardiac surgery patients who wish to remain overnight.

“SMH has a commitment to provide the best level of service with the best technology available to the healthcare consumers of our hospital service district and the surrounding area. This expansion will foster increased patient satisfaction while providing two technologically advanced critical care units in which our physicians can practice, “Slidell Memorial Hospital CEO, Bob Hawley stated.

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This $4.2 million project is a key investment in core hospital services made possible with the passage of the 2003 ad valorem tax referendum. The ad valorem tax enabled SMH to restructure debt and released cash flow to invest back into the facility.

The new units were designed to optimize critical and cardiovascular care with the comfort and privacy of patients and patients’ families in mind. Design elements include: a private physician and family consultation room; sound reduction flooring; dialysis access in each room; a state-of-the-art nurse call system; charting stations located at key intervals to maximize patient observation; a state-of-the-art cardiac bedside monitoring system; a dedicated cardiac procedure room; four private physician dictation areas; two negative pressure rooms for patients in isolation or with respiratory illness; and a comfortable family and visitor waiting area.

Tom Cook, Associate Administrator of Cardiovascular and Surgical Services, is very pleased with the patient benefits that the new expansion provides. “The specialized care that patients will receive will ultimately reduce length of stay in the hospital and will complement additional new services SMH will provide, such as the 64 Slice CT,” stated Cook.

The public is invited to attend the Open House between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. A ribbon cutting by the Slidell Chamber of Commerce will be held at 5 p.m.