St. Clair Hospital Opens New ER, Reduced Wait Times, Toyota@St. Clair Process

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Western PA's busiest ER is now bigger and faster with capacity for 80,000 patient visits and reduced wait times. Using the Toyota Production Model, St. Clair Hospital in the Pittsburgh suburb of Mt. Lebanon is reducing wait times and increasing patient satisfaction, through an improved process and flow throughout the hospital.

The new ER is much more than just an expansion in square footage. St. Clair has truly redefined how it delivers emergency care and the patient experience throughout the Hospital. The new ER is the latest example of our commitment to provide state-of-the-art care, close to home.

St. Clair Hospital today marked the official opening of its new $13.5 million Emergency Room, typically the busiest ER in southwestern Pennsylvania with more than 50,000 patient visits each year.

Almost double in size, the new ER houses 46 state-of-the-art treatment rooms capable of handling up to 80,000 patient visits a year. By implementing industry-inspired process engineering production techniques and advanced technologies, patient wait times - the number one cause of emergency department overcrowding and patient dissatisfaction in hospitals throughout the greater Pittsburgh area and the nation - are expected to be greatly reduced, if not eliminated.

The number of emergency room visits at St. Clair continues to rise due to expanded clinical programs, and a diverse service area that includes a growing senior population and the burgeoning suburbs of southern Allegheny and northern Washington counties.

"Greatly expanding our ER is a direct response to the needs of the community," said James M. Collins, president and chief executive officer, St. Clair Hospital. "The new ER is much more than just an expansion in square footage. St. Clair has truly redefined how it delivers emergency care and the patient experience throughout the Hospital. The new ER is the latest example of our commitment to provide state-of-the-art care, close to home."

Designed to make the patient experience as comfortable and as efficient as possible, the number of treatment rooms in the ER has been increased to 46 from 20. The ER is filled with the most advanced health care technology, all smartly housed in a less clinical atmosphere designed to have a calming effect on patients and families alike. Each room is equipped with cardiac monitoring capabilities. The 46 treatment rooms include:

  •     31 acute adult;
  •     Six pediatric-equipped;
  •     Three behavioral and mental health; and
  •     Six "Fast Track," for patients with minor illnesses and injuries.

The ER is staffed by board-certified physicians, physician assistants, certified registered nurse practitioners, a nursing staff specially trained in Emergency Medicine, technicians, and 24/7 pediatric care.

$1.5 million of the new ED's $13.5 million pricetag was a generous gift donated by the Rossin Family Foundation in memory of Peter C. Rossin. Ada Rossin, the wife of the late Mr. Rossin, attended the dedication ceremony and called the new ED "a wonderful addition to St. Clair Hospital and an important expansion of life-saving health care services to the people of the South Hills." Peter C. Rossin was founder, chairman and CEO of Washington, Pa.-based Dynamet and is perhaps best remembered for his charitable contributions to the community.

$500,000 of construction costs was paid for by a grant from the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program, an initiative of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Federal funding of $487,000 from the Omnibus Appropriations Bill also was applied to the cost of construction.

The new ED includes "Austin's Playroom," a specially designed, child-friendly waiting area for pediatric patients and their siblings, that was constructed through a gift from the Mario Lemieux Foundation and its initiative, The Playroom Project. The playroom is named after Austin Lemieux, the son of former Pittsburgh Penguins star and current Penguins owner, Mario Lemieux, and his wife Nathalie. Mrs. Lemieux, chair of The Playroom Project, and Austin participated in a ribbon-cutting ceremony for Austin's Playroom at today's dedication.

Construction on the new ED began in October 2007. The first phase opened in September and included an addition built from the ground up. The second and final phase commenced in September and involved extensive renovations to the existing ED, which opened in 1995.

"From the moment patients and their families enter the new facility, the entire staff is immediately focused not only on providing the best care, but to make the entire process as comfortable and as fast as possible," said Dr. Christopher DeLuca, chairman of the Department of Emergency Medicine, St. Clair Hospital. "The entire ER experience has been designed from the patient perspective and with the goal of delivering advanced health care."

About St. Clair
St. Clair Hospital is a nationally recognized acute care facility that provides advanced, high quality health care to more than 300,000 residents of southwestern Pennsylvania. With 525 physicians and more than 2,000 employees, St. Clair is the largest employer in Pittsburgh's South Hills.

1000 Bower Hill Road
Pittsburgh, PA 15243

Contact: Richard M. Sieber
Director, Public Relations


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Linda Topoleski
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