The Brigham City Community Hospital held a groundbreaking ceremony Tuesday for a new emergency department nearly double size of its current facility. The 7,360 square foot expansion will cost nearly $15 million in its totality and is expected to be completed in December 2019.
“This budget for the expansion includes all new equipment. We will have state-of-the-art equipment, monitors, stretchers, everything that we need to treat patients,” said Julie Nicholes, the Director of Emergency Services for the hospital. “This will be the state-of-the-art in emergency.”
Nicholes said the staff is especially excited for the new facility.
“I actually have a nurse in my emergency room that’s been here for the 41 years since we actually started,” she said. “We’ve been talking about this emergency room for years.”
Nicholes said the expansion will not affect the hospital’s level four trauma rating from the Utah Department of Health.
“We are going from a six bed to a twelve bed ER,” Nicholes said. “But a trauma four actually for a small community is actually a good accreditation to have — not all small hospitals have it.”)
Brigham Community Hospital CEO Richard Spuhler said the project took 12 years to plan and put into motion. He says there is a nervous excitement now the project is nearly completed.
“This is great because we can see what’s going to happen and the community is going to benefit from this greatly,” Spuhler said. “On the other hand, you take a step back and you go, ’wow, I’m really scared because, holy smokes, now all these things we’ve got to deal with.’”
Spuhler said ER hours and accessibility will be unaffected by the construction.
“Yes — we will be open throughout construction, 24/7; we don’t close,” Spuhler said. “We’ve tried to make this as easy as possible, and hopefully it will be, and they will continue to get great care.”
Nathan Miller, the marketing director for Brigham Community Hospital, says the expansion shows the hospital's dedication to the community.
“We’ve been a staple in the community for over forty years,” Miller said. “I think we’re all just really excited to get the ball rolling.”