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Inpatient tower slated for completion this fall
The new structure will house two new operating rooms, recovery area, intensive care unit, and medical and surgical inpatient units, cardiac catheterization unit, emergency department, central sterile supply, physical therapy, occupational therapy and chiropractic clinic. (U.S. Air Force photo by Steve Pivnick)
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Inpatient tower slated for completion this fall

Posted 1/19/2011   Updated 1/19/2011 Email story   Print story

    


by Capt. Matthew Clugston and Tech. Sgt. Jennifer Cabe
81st Medical Support Squadron


1/19/2011 - KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. -- As a new year begins, two major construction-related projects continue at the 81st Medical Group Hospital.

Inpatient tower construction

The inpatient tower is a Base Realignment and Closure-funded project costing more than $50 million. The four-story structure will provide modern facility design solutions for accessibility requirements, required space for today's mission and functional facility requirements suitable for delivering today's health care.

The four-story inpatient tower, scheduled for completion this fall, will feature new state-of-the art locations for two new operating rooms, recovery/peri-anesthesia (post-operative) care unit and a cardiac catheterization lab, as well as the intensive care unit and medical and surgical inpatient units.

In addition, the structure will include a new emergency department, central sterile supply, physical therapy, occupational therapy and chiropractic clinic Between April and October, the inpatient tower progressed from a basic excavation to a complete concrete structure attached to the northeast corner of the 81st Medical Group Hospital. About one floor was added to the building each month starting in May and the structure was topped out Sept. 24. Rain or shine, the work continues at a feverish pace.

Over the next few months, the construction crane that has loomed over the project is coming down. The next phase of the project involves closing in the building and finishing the roof. Work is also underway on the tower's interior. Elevator shafts are being installed, electrical and mechanical work has started and interior metal studs and masonry are in progress.

The layout maximizes staff efficiency and enhances patient safety. As an integral part of the Gulf Coast community, these synergistic benefits bolster the 81st MDG's ability to compete
in the managed-care environment.

Infrastructure repair and energy management

The infrastructure repair and energy management project is a massive $32 million undertaking with a two-fold purpose: to upgrade present building systems and meet current building code compliance standards

One part of the project that's nearly complete includes heating, ventilation and air conditioning infrastructure upgrade repair. This entails replacing 17 air-handling units, overhauling the nutritional medicine kitchen hood and cooling systems, repairing the A tower exhaust system and changing the veterinary clinic chiller.

Another element of the project that's almost finished involves structural infrastructure. Roof surfaces have been renovated, exterior surfaces have been improved, sealed and painted, and sediment and debris has been removed from subbasement crawl ways.

Elevator upgrades that modified five elevators and restored three elevator controls are done.

Another aspect of the project, electrical infrastructure upgrade repair, is about 55 percent complete This includes refurbishing the electrical substation grounding system; validating and labeling all critical, life safety and equipment essential systems; installing and improving transient voltage surge suppression; and restoring all motor control centers.



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