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Cleveland Clinic’s Akron General Health System broke ground this morning on its new $43 million high-tech emergency department building scheduled to open in Fall 2017.

The two-story emergency department is designed to enhance patient experience and expedite the process for the patient from admittance through discharge. The larger facility will encompass 60,000 square feet and boasts a central triage to expedite patient treatment. In addition to eight triage rooms, the facility will have 58 treatment areas for patients, including:

  • Four high-acuity trauma rooms (up from two currently)
  • A new designated area for PATH (Providing Access to Healing) patients seeking treatment from Akron General’s new Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner program
  • An expanded behavioral health unit
  • An imaging department, including a CT scanner and two radiographic rooms
  • A separate urgent care area
  • A designated area for quarantining and treating highly contagious patients.

“The new emergency department will be a premier 21st century emergency medicine facility and would not have been possible without participation from Cleveland Clinic,” said Thomas L. “Tim” Stover, M.D., MBA, President and CEO, Akron General Health System. “We worked closely with Cleveland Clinic on the design and functionality of the new larger emergency department, combining our best practices so that we will be able to work more efficiently while treating additional patients, reduce duplication, and utilize the latest technological advancements for the benefit of our community.”

Akron General’s existing main campus emergency department was originally constructed in the 1960’s and is approximately 19,000 square feet with 37 exam rooms. The space has been renovated and enlarged numerous times over the past 50 years with the last renovation completed in 2002. Although designed for 30,000 patients annually, Akron General’s downtown emergency department sees about 56,000 patient visits each year. The expanded department will be able to accommodate between 65,000 and 75,000 patient visits per year.

“This is a very visible example of the strength and significance of the relationship between Cleveland Clinic and Akron General,” said Bradford Borden, M.D., chair of Cleveland Clinic’s Emergency Services Institute. “By working together as an integrated regional provider network, we are able to serve patients better, giving them the care they need, whenever and wherever they need it.”

In addition, Akron General Medical Center is an academic center for physician training and a regional Level I trauma center. It has the longest-standing community-based emergency residency-training program in the world, celebrating 42 years.

Hasenstab Architects is designing the building, which will host the emergency department on the first floor with a new bridge connecting it to the main hospital. Administrative offices will be located on the second floor along with 11,000 square feet of space for future emergency department use.