Malcom Randall VA Medical Center Patient Tower Addition Now Open to Veterans

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The Malcom Randall VA Medical Center is improving patient care for veterans with the recent opening of a new patient bed tower addition to its existing hospital in Gainesville, Florida.

The Malcom Randall VA Medical Center is improving patient care for veterans with the recent opening of a new patient bed tower addition to its existing hospital in Gainesville, Florida.

Located directly in front of the existing hospital, the new patient tower creates a new front entrance for the facility and the rooms allow for enhanced patient privacy for military service personnel. The upgraded building was necessary to meet the VA’s growing needs, such as an expanded emergency area and additional inpatient space for psychiatric services.

"It was obvious that the current bed tower no longer served our needs," said Dr. Bradley Bender, chief of staff at Malcom Randall VA Medical Center.

Designed by Flad Architects, the 245,000-square-foot, five-story bed tower houses 228 private rooms and space for veterans and their family members. The first floor houses specialty clinics including ophthalmology, urology and the ear/nose/throat clinic. The new laboratory area also is housed on the first floor and provides a large waiting room and additional blood and specimen draw areas. An expanded emergency room accommodates 10 patients.

The new tower is designed with single-bed rooms (120 for medical, 60 for surgical and 48 for psychiatric patients), each with its own bathroom. Five of the rooms are designed to serve veterans with spinal cord injuries. A couch in an alcove becomes a pullout bed for family members.

Bender, who said he is not a veteran, added that "my wish is that I could get my care at this facility."

As a medical training and educational facility, the patient tower also provides a modern space to train the next generation of physicians and healthcare professionals. Over 180 University of Florida medical school residents, interns, and students are trained at the Gainesville and Lake City VA Medical Centers each year.

“Throughout its history, this facility has expanded to meet the needs of our growing veteran population,” said Thomas Cappello, M.P.H., director of the North Florida/South Georgia Veterans Health System. “What originally started as a VA hospital in 1967 has grown into two medical centers and 11 outpatient clinics. Last year we cared for over 130,000 veterans throughout our system, and of those, approximately 110,000 received some care here at the Malcom Randall VA Medical Center.”

About Flad Architects
Flad Architects (http://www.flad.com) specializes in the planning and design of innovative facilities for healthcare, higher education, and science and technology clients. With headquarters in Madison, Wisconsin, and offices throughout the United States, Flad is a nationally recognized leader in serving the complex needs of knowledge-based organizations.

About North Florida/South-Georgia Veterans Health Systems
The North Florida/South Georgia Veterans Health System consists of two medical centers, three large multi-specialty outpatient clinics and eight small community-based primary care outpatient clinics. The Malcom Randall VA Medical Center in Gainesville is a tertiary care facility that is also an active teaching hospital, with an extensive array of specialty services. The Malcom Randall VA Medical Center combines a full range of patient care services with state-of-the-art technology that is enhanced and supported through education and research.

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Mary Hirsch
Flad Architects
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