In an effort to better serve the increasing numbers of patients who seek out its services, the WVU Medicine Center for Emergency Medicine at J.W. Ruby Memorial Hospital officially unveiled today (Jan. 31) the completed renovations to its patient-care area. A photo gallery from today's event is available on CONNECT.

“For many of our patients, their first experience with WVU Medicine is in our Emergency Center, essentially making it the ‘front door’ of the hospital. As a result, we need to make sure we are delivering the high quality care they have come to expect in an environment that best meets their needs,” Ian B.K. Martin, MD, MBA., chair of Emergency Medicine, said. “What we have now is a center that we can be proud of, and one that embodies the importance Emergency Medicine plays in the healthcare spectrum.”

The expansion, which took more than a year to complete, added 16 exam rooms, bringing the total to 43. All of the rooms are now private; there are no more curtained-off areas. The trauma/resuscitation areas expanded from two curtained areas in three rooms into seven larger individual rooms with state-of-the-art equipment to meet all of the needs of an acutely ill or injured patient. There are dedicated behavioral medicine treatment and evaluation rooms. The expansion also resulted in more workspaces for nurses and physicians.

This round of renovations follows the opening of the four-bed Pediatric Emergency Center, which was designed to provide children with a more kid-friendly environment in which to receive care. It is staffed by physicians, nurses, and advanced practice professionals trained in the care of children. Plans are in the works for future expansion of this area as well.

“Our number one priority has been and always will be our patients,” Owen Lander, MD, medical director of the Center for Emergency Medicine, said. “We hope that by having dedicated space for our pediatric patients and bigger, private rooms for our adult patients, we are taking what can be a stressful and overwhelming experience for anyone, regardless of age, and giving them some peace of mind that they are receiving the right care, from the right people, in the right place.” 

Response to the renovation, which was completed in November, has been positive.

“Because we are now able to work more effectively and efficiently, patients and families seem happier, and our staff members seem to be happier to come to work,” Valerie Boley, RN, BSN., director of Emergency Services, said. “This project has given WVU Medicine another reason to be proud of the advancements we are making in providing excellent care to West Virginian and all those that we serve.”

While this is the latest renovation to the Center for Emergency Medicine, it is not the last. Renovations to the waiting room and triage area are scheduled to begin later this year.