Fairview Southdale Hospital announced plans Thursday for a $39 million expansion project that would more than double the size of its emergency center—the health system’s foundation is seeking community support to help fund the project.
 
Minneapolis-based Fairview said its foundation has raised $7.5 million so far and hopes to reach $15 million by the end of 2014.
 
The project entails doubling the size of patient rooms, increasing the number of rooms from 30 to 43, building a new helipad on the roof, and improving the building’s layout with an innovative model of emergency care that is designed for faster triage and treatment, according to Fairview.
 
“We’re not just trying to renovate the space,” Bradley Beard, president of Fairview Southdale Hospital, said in a statement. “We’re redesigning care for people who come to the emergency department, in a way that best meets their needs and best utilizes our abilities.”
 
The hospital opened in 1965 and the emergency department has been largely unchanged since 1985. According to Fairview it has reached its maximum capacity for patient care. The emergency department was designed to manage 30,000 visits a year, and last year it received nearly 50 percent more with 43,000 visits.
 
“This project will ensure, as our communities grow, they can get the treatment they need in an environment that meets our standards of healing, privacy, and comfort,” Robert Solheim, chair of Fairview Southdale Hospital’s board of trustees, said in a statement. “We are grateful to the donors who are making this important project possible.”
 
The new center is slated to open in 2015 and will be named the Carl N. Platou Emergency Center in memory of the former Fairview president. 

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