New Covenant Medical Center ER to open Wednesday - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

New Covenant Medical Center ER to open Wednesday

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WATERLOO (KWWL) -

The new 27,000-square-foot Emergency Room at Covenant Medical Center opens its doors to patients Wednesday.

The facility is almost twice as large as the old emergency area, which was roughly 14,000-square-feet. Trauma and treatment rooms are larger with brand new equipment. Emergency Department Manager Carol Ratchport said the rooms were built larger to allow for more family members in the rooms with patients as well as equipment needs.

The helipad is also new in the ER. Close to an elevator that leads directly down to patient rooms, hospital officials said response times will be improved. The pad itself is also weather resistant with built-in heaters to handle snow and ice during the winter season.

Covenant officials said the hospital outgrew the old space. Patient flow increased at such a fast rate that some people were waiting in hospital beds in the hallway.

The new ER will officially open to patients at 7 a.m. Wednesday. The total cost of the project was about $18 million with $5 million donated from community businesses and employees.

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