CPH on track to finish renovation

Posted: Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Central Peninsula Hospital is on track to complete the third and final phase of its $49.9 million renovation project before the summer months.

The focus until that time will be on completing construction of the emergency room, which is currently in a temporary position at the back of the building.

The goal for completion is May 1 and, according to Ryan Smith, president and chief executive officer of CPH, the new emergency room should be fully operable at that time.

"We've stayed on schedule," he said. "If there are delays in the emergency room then we're into the summer and things can get pretty crazy for us."

The new emergency room will house 13 designated private rooms, as well as a centrally located trauma room.

Phase I of the renovation project was to complete site work and draw up construction plans. Phase II was the construction and opening of the Mountain Tower area of the hospital in January 2007.

The initial part of phase III consisted of moving the cafeteria to the front of the building and completing the lobby and the gift shop.

The prior hospital building has been integrated into the new plan and named the River Pavillion. This building was approximately 113,000 square feet. The size of CPH has nearly doubled in size to approximately 200,000 square feet with the introduction of the Mountain Tower.

The hospital is an affiliated member of Planetree, a nonprofit organization that works with hospitals to develop and implement patient-centered care. Planetree's concepts have been implemented into the hospital's new design.

"We started this about four years ago to try to brand our hospital," Smith said. "Our goal is to become a Planetree designated hospital. We've made some huge progress (toward our Planetree goals) with the Mountain Tower construction."

According to Smith, CPH has completed about 90 percent of the process needed to gain this credential. There is no set time frame to complete the process, but Smith said the last 10 percent will most likely be more difficult to accomplish.

The hospital also is working on becoming an Alaska Performance Excellence (APEX) certified hospital. APEX is a new project designed to recognize "world-class" organizations in Alaska.

The program is open to small businesses, manufacturers, educational and health care facilities, and not-for-profits.

APEX officials will be at the hospital in February to assess CPH's qualifications.

As a not-for-profit hospital, CPH is required to provide care regardless of the patient's ability to pay.

As a way of reporting on this aspect of their work, CPH has submitted a community benefit report. Since it receives approximately $3.5 to $4 million per year from tax money, CPH also includes projects at the hospital that are beneficial to the general community in the report.

"We like to give back to the community with all of the programs we highlight in the community benefit report," Smith said.

The report can be viewed online at the hospital's Web site www.cpgh.org.

The hospital recently drafted a five-year strategic plan. The six key initiatives involved in the plan are to strengthen workforce, to do medical staff alignment, to keep up financial health, to craft information system solutions, to provide clinical and service excellence, and to intensify market focus and expand market share.

"For a small rural hospital we have a lot of stuff going on," Smith said.

Hannahlee Allers can be reached at hannahlee.allers@peninsulaclarion.com.

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