What we think: Hospital effort deserves praise from JamestownThe Jamestown Regional Medical Center is no longer a dream for Jamestown’s future. Wednesday’s groundbreaking ceremony at the site marked the official start of the project that is expected to be completed in 2011. We congratulate Jamestown Hospital officials and board for their work to move this project forward.
By: Sun Staff, The Jamestown Sun
The Jamestown Regional Medical Center is no longer a dream for Jamestown’s future. Wednesday’s groundbreaking ceremony at the site marked the official start of the project that is expected to be completed in 2011. We congratulate Jamestown Hospital officials and board for their work to move this project forward.
Also important to recognize are U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development and the state’s congressional delegation for making this project a reality.
Hospital officials have been telling us for some time that the current facility doesn’t function well for a modern hospital. The patient rooms are too small, aren’t suitable for equipment and bathrooms aren’t handicapped accessible. Nurses can walk up to five miles in a day going back and forth from stations to patient rooms. There’s no room to expand the hospital where it is now.
The medical center will be a new, state-of-the-art facility located off Interstate 94 designed for patient comfort and staff efficiency. The 50-acre site will have a 100,000 square-foot critical access hospital and a helicopter landing spot for transporting patients. The hospital has also invited the local clinics to co-locate at the site in the planned medical office building but whether that will occur isn’t known at this time.
The location of the new facility will provide easy access for I-94 traffic. Given that the medical center will serve the region, not only Jamestown residents, this will help travelers or area residents quickly find the hospital.
Critical to the $52 million hospital project is USDA Rural Development. Its $46 million in funding made this project work. It is the largest projected funded by USDA Rural Development in North Dakota, with $31 million in a direct loan. The Bank of North Dakota is providing a guaranteed loan of $15 million.
At the heart of this massive project is better patient care and a huge step into the future for rural health care.
We congratulate the Jamestown Hospital Board and staff for their work to make this vision real. And we appreciate the state and federal partnerships that made it all possible.
(Editorials are the opinion of Jamestown Sun management and the newspaper’s editorial board)