Florida Hospital Waterman Announces Expansion at Tavares Campus

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Florida Hospital Waterman announced today an expansion at its Tavares hospital campus that will more than double the size of the Emergency Department and include the addition of a four-story patient tower dedicated to women's services, pediatrics and future growth.

The project will add more than 111,000 square feet of patient care space to the hospital including an expansion of the Emergency Department to 58 beds, and a 24-bed women and children's unit on the second floor of the tower. Floors three and four will be shelled for future growth, and the structure will support an additional expansion up to six floors.

The expansion and renovation of the Emergency Department and new patient tower mark the single largest investment in a Lake County healthcare facility since Florida Hospital Watermans Tavares campus was completed in 2003, said David Ottati, President and Chief Executive Officer, Adventist Health System Central Florida Division North Region. This is a substantial investment in our community and helps further our mission of providing whole-person, faith-based care.

In 2016, Florida Hospital Waterman treated more than 65,000 patients in its Emergency Department. When the hospital moved to its new facility and current location in Tavares, the Emergency Department was built to accommodate 50,000 patients a year. Since 2000, the population of Lake County has grown by nearly 50%, and its expected to grow by another 12% over the next four years according to 2010 Census data.

We have experienced substantial growth in our Emergency Department over the past several years, said Abel Biri, Chief Executive Officer, Florida Hospital Waterman. As our community continues to grow, and more Lake County residents choose us for their care, we must expand to meet that demand. The expansion will help ensure we are well-positioned to provide the efficient, quality and compassionate care our community expects and deserves.

The hospitals Emergency Department will grow from 35 to 58 beds. It will feature improvements in privacy and patient flow, and offer innovative treatment options for special patient populations like children, seniors and heart attack patients.

When patients come to the Emergency Department they are often in their greatest time of need. They didn't plan for it, so we must be prepared, said Floriano Putigna, DO, Emergency Department Medical Director. More than 80% of the hospital's patients originate in the Emergency Department, and Florida Hospital Waterman has placed a significant amount of emphasis on this area for a good reason.

The second floor of the new patient tower will be dedicated to a state-of-the-art women and children's center. In partnership with Florida Hospital for Women and Florida Hospital for Children, the new center will include 24 beds for women's services including labor and delivery, post-partum care, and inpatient pediatrics. The hospital's current Center for Women and Children will be converted to a medical-surgical unit.

The new unit serves as a symbol of our dedication to provide expert care to our entire community, said Lynn Kirman, Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer, Florida Hospital Waterman. Our partnership with Florida Hospital for Women and Florida Hospital for Children in Orlando means Lake County residents will have access to some of the regions most advanced and specialized care right here at home. We have worked closely with area physicians and patients to design the new space to ensure its a welcoming and healing environment.

The Florida Hospital Waterman Foundation has pledged to raise $5 million through community donations to help fund the project. The entire project is expected to cost $70 million.

We are proud to invite our community to join us on this journey as we embark on a multi-faceted campaign which will position Florida Hospital Waterman to meet the growing and future healthcare needs of Lake County, said April Kauffman, President, Florida Hospital Waterman Foundation. A community investment of $5 million from philanthropy will empower the hospital to breathe life into this project. The community has answered the calling to care in the past, and we know there are many among us who will boldly answer the call to partner again.

Construction is slated to begin in July with the expansion and new patient tower complete by the start of 2019. At that time, the existing Emergency Department will be renovated. The entire projected is scheduled to be complete by July 2019. The project is being designed by Gresham, Smith and Partners of Jacksonville. Construction will be completed by Robins & Morton of Orlando.

A groundbreaking at the hospital is scheduled for Thursday, July 6.

Emergency Department and Patient Tower Expansion Groundbreaking

Thursday, July 6, 2017

9:30 am

Outside current Emergency Department

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