Hershey Medical Center completes renovation of heart and vascular unit

A man sits in a chair while a nurse cares for him in his hospital room. The room includes a ceiling lift that hangs above the woman. To her right, is a patient table and bed. Multiple monitors, cords and equipment hand on the wall behind the bed. A curtain hangs across the sliding door to the room. A cart is visible in the hall beyond the open door.Kayla Smith, a Hershey Medical Center registered nurse, shares a laugh with Peter Matweecha while she cares for him in the newly completed Heart and Vascular Progressive Care Unit.

Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center will complete the final stage of a two-part move of its Heart and Vascular Progressive Care Unit from the first to the third floor on Tuesday, Feb. 13. The move will begin at 8 a.m. and continue until each patient is relocated one by one from 1 Main Southeast to 3 South Addition West.

February 9, 2024Penn State Health News

Tomorrow’s move marks the end of renovations that were needed to accommodate a growing number of intermediate care patients.

“Since the COVID pandemic, we’ve cared for an increasing number of high acuity patients,” said Lillian Domitrovits, nurse manager. “With the larger unit, we will help improve flow through the Emergency Department and ensure patients get the care they need.”

The 28-bed renovated unit features all private rooms designed with the latest features to improve patient experience. In addition to new beds, computers and patient monitors, each room includes a ceiling lift to aid in patient movement and nurse safety. The unit also includes two patient-of-size rooms, two negative pressure rooms, a conference room, staff lounge and a quiet room where staff can decompress and debrief.

“Our unit council and staff members worked closely with the Facilities Department to plan, organize and execute the move,” Domitrovits said. “The space ensures patients and nurses have everything they need.”

The unit had been operating on two different floors since March 2023, when the first half of the unit moved. Although the separation presented its challenges, Domitrovits is proud of what they accomplished during the renovation process.

“My leadership team has been exceptionally wonderful and supportive,” she said. “Communication and teamwork made the difference.”

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