On Tuesday, Dec. 10, St. Bernards Medical Center officially opened its new, state-of-the-art tower, which now serves as the hub of all surgical and intensive care services for the hospital. Patient care in the new 245,000-square foot tower began on Friday, Dec. 13.
“St. Bernards has seen tremendous growth throughout its 119 year history and that progress continues with the opening of the new tower,” said Chris Barber, president and CEO of St. Bernards Healthcare. “This is an exciting time for the entire St. Bernards organization as this tower helps provide us the additional capacity to care for even more patients in Northeast Arkansas and Southeast Missouri.”
Visitors and patients to the new tower enter a ground-level atrium with access to visitor-friendly amenities such as a community/education room, a chapel, improved wayfinding and support services for surgery and critical care areas, including sterile processing. The tower also includes the 1900 Market, a café and coffee shop serving Northeast Arkansas’ own Shadrachs coffee.
All surgical services – including inpatient and outpatient procedures, as well as waiting areas – will be in the new tower. The tower features 14 surgical suites, with the ability to expand in the future. The surgical suites, which are almost doubled in size from the hospital’s current suites, feature new equipment and cutting-edge technology.
This level also includes a hybrid surgical suite, which is equipped with advanced medical imaging devices enabling minimally invasive surgery, as well as a special procedure room used for interventional radiology procedures. This floor also features additional support programs including a pharmacy and a GI Lab.
Additionally, the tower houses a 46-bed intensive care unit that can be expanded in the future. All intensive care rooms are larger than the ones in the current hospital and this expansion brings all adult intensive care services to one floor.
The St. Bernards intensive care unit now has open visiting hours, which means that with physician approval a family member can stay in the room with the patient. All rooms have a private bathroom, as well as a larger, more spacious family area. The unit also now features an ongoing nursing observation area situated right outside each patient room.
One floor of the tower is a shelled space allowing for future growth and expansion. Each level of the new tower directly connects to the current medical center, allowing for easy access for both patients and visitors.
Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson sent a recorded message for the event.
“St. Bernards has grown from a six-room frame house in 1900 to a regional healthcare system, and today, 119 years later, we are cutting the ribbon on a brand new surgical and intensive care tower,” Governor Hutchinson said. “The work of St. Bernards in Jonesboro is more than treating the sick and injured, it’s ministering to the body and soul.”
The new tower is a $103 million project and is the third phase of St. Bernards’ master facility plan, which includes the completed Cancer Center, updates to the Emergency Department and Heartcare Center. The fourth phase is extensive renovations to patient and family areas inside the Medical Center. Together, all of the projects are a $137.5 million investment.
The project was developed in conjunction with HKS, Inc. and Nabholz Construction is serving as contractor. For the construction of the tower, St. Bernards is proud to have sourced as many local products as possible.
For more information about the new tower, please visit stbernards.info.