Finley Hospital expansion for patient privacy in final months - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Finley Hospital expansion for patient privacy in final months

DUBUQUE (KWWL) -- The Centers for Disease Control says around two million people get hospital-acquired infections each year. Finley Hospital in Dubuque hopes a change-over to all private patient rooms will make sure infection rates there are lower.

Crews are in the final months of the nearly two-year and $10.5 million expansion project to make the switch. Putting more space between patients helps cut infection, but these new rooms have a lot of other features geared toward safety.

KWWL went on a tour of the new two-floor, forty room expansion where some things might look ordinary, but are actually for safety.

Designed with the help of doctors and nurses. safety starts with private patient rooms.

"We reduce dramatically the risk of infection because you're not sharing a room with a patient that might have an infection that they can catch," Finley President and CEO John Knox said.

"The rooms will accomadate more equipment without having a second patient in the room. It's going to allow a lot more space to accomadate all the needs of an individual," Chief Nursing Officer Diana Batchelor said.

Inside the rooms, everything from the double outlets to the bathroom layout to the floor design isn't just for looks. For example, the wood grain floor signals you should've washed your hands before getting there, and nurses will have stations outside of rooms -- visible right through windows.

"If a patient is confused in getting up or in need of assistance and not asking for it, there will be more of a visual cue of the patient's needs," Batchelor said.

Beds will be equiped with alarm systems.

"If the patient starts to get out of bed, and they're not supposed to, the alarm goes right to the nurse, the nurse intervenes and helps that patient so they don't fall," Knox said. Knox said patient falls are always a concern in hospitals.

The expansion project should be finished by mid-December with a grand opening in early January. Administrators say the project should also get special environmental certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.

Online Reporter: Jamie Grey

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