Jefferson Hospital Celebrates Opening of New Emergency Department

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Officials of Highmark Health, Allegheny Health Network (AHN) and Jefferson Hospital joined elected officials, community leaders and hospital staff today to officially cut the ribbon to the hospital’s new emergency department.

The $21-million, 34,000-square-foot emergency department expansion will significantly enhance Jefferson’s capacity to serve the more than 50,000 patients who seek emergency care at the hospital every year. It’s one of the busiest emergency departments serving the South Hills of Pittsburgh, Lower Mon Valley and surrounding areas. 

The new Jefferson Emergency Department is being completed in two phases, with the second phase – renovation of current emergency department space – expected to be completed in May 2020.

Features of the new facility that will improve the care experience for patients include:

  • An easy-to-access entrance with expansive façade and dedicated patient parking
  • 44 private, state-of-the-art observation and treatment rooms designed to accommodate all ages, illnesses, and acute disease management
  • A new patient registration process that will greatly reduce wait times to see clinicians
  • A larger triage area with increased patient privacy and efficiency
  • Seven care team stations, designed as ‘central’ nursing pods for more direct patient care
  • An integrated imaging suite, with x-ray and CT technology, eliminating the need to transport patients to other areas of the hospital
  • Designated behavioral health assessment and treatment rooms
  • Specialized rooms for trauma/resuscitation
  • Bariatric room with lift and specially-sized bed 
  • A comfortable, light-filled waiting room for patients and loved ones

The ED renovation also includes a relocation of the hospital’s helipad to the roof of the structure, allowing for more efficient patient transports to and from the hospital.

“This significant investment is another milestone in Jefferson’s legacy of excellence in medical care and in our commitment to meeting the ever-changing health needs of patients in our community,” said Louise Urban, president, Jefferson Hospital. “Through close collaboration with our talented and dedicated caregivers, local EMS and patients, we have designed a space that will help us deliver the highest quality service and experiences for those in need of emergency care.”

Thanks to a $1 million grant from the Jefferson Regional Foundation,  Jefferson Hospital is also establishing a patient screening and referral program called the ‘Front Door Initiative for Social Emergency Medicine,’ within its new emergency department. The program will serve patients holistically by looking for social determinants of health risks, and if identified, connecting them to resources spanning from transportation, housing stability, food security and more. Currently, nearly 60 percent of Jefferson ED patients report at least one social risk factor.

Emergency departments in our region, and across the country, serve as safety nets for many people and they play an important role in the overall health and well-being of communities,” said Cynthia Hundorfean, President and CEO, Allegheny Health Network. “An investment in emergency care at Jefferson is indeed an investment in everyone who calls Jefferson Hills, and the surrounding region, their home, and we are extremely excited about the impact our beautiful new facility will have on this community.” 

The new emergency department at Jefferson complements numerous investments that Highmark Health has made in the hospital over the last five years, including its new Cancer and Women and Infants Centers that opened in 2014 and more recently, a new $17.5 million surgical suite that features a vascular suite and state-of-the-art operating room suites for minimally invasive, robotic, and advanced surgical care in a number of specialties.

“This latest advancement for our hospital wouldn’t be possible without the generous support of so many, but especially the leadership of Highmark Health and AHN. Their commitment to our mission has been both inspiring and invaluable to our success and progress,” Urban said. “We are also deeply appreciative of the backing of our elected representatives and other community leaders for their contributions and steadfast support of our hospital, including former State Senator Guy Reschenthaler and Senator Pam Iovino.”

The new ED is expected to open to patients in the coming weeks.

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About Jefferson Hospital
Jefferson Hospital, a part of Allegheny Health Network (AHN), is a full-service inpatient facility located in Jefferson Hills that serves the South Hills of Pittsburgh, the lower Mon Valley, and surrounding communities. Featuring a medical staff of nearly 400 physicians covering more than 40 health care specialties, the hospital provides comprehensive inpatient and outpatient surgical services, and emergency care. It features a Cardiovascular Institute, Cancer Institute, Orthopaedic Institute, Bariatric & Metabolic Institute, Women and Infants Center, Women’s Diagnostic Center, Sleep Disorders Center, and Wound Care Center among other services. Jefferson Hospital also includes the Bethel Park Health + Wellness Pavilion as well as several outpatient, primary care, and therapy sites across the South Hills and neighboring areas.