Niagara, ON - The extended front entrance and new Ambulatory Care Centre at Greater Niagara General (GNG) Site will open for business on Monday, April 7 at 6 a.m.
"We're moving our equipment into the new Ambulatory Care area over the weekend," said Frank Demizio, Vice President Clinical Services. "We appreciate all of the extra efforts of our staff in helping us with the move during the weekend so we can be up and running on Monday with minimal disruption to patient services."
Patients and staff will begin using the area Monday morning for outpatient services such as Medical Day Stay, Fracture/Ortho Clinic, Oncology Clinic, ENT Clinic, Ophthalmology Clinic, Urology Clinic, Niagara Diabetes Centre and Pre-Op Clinic. Surgical Day Care/Day Surgery has been in operation in this area since September 2007.
The NHS has spent the last year carrying out extensive renovations to make our old Emergency Department a new Ambulatory Care Centre, and this new spacious area will be the busiest in the hospital. About 225 patients – approximately 32,000 a year -- will be coming to this area for treatment each weekday.
The opening of the front entrance and Ambulatory Care area will mean changes for patients and visitors with respect to parking, registration and building access.
- A key change and enhancement will be a drive up drop off/pick up area directly in front of the main doors of the hospital for patients' and families' convenience. The front entrance will also be the location for Ontario Patient Transfer (OPT) vehicles transferring patients between hospitals.
- The Business Office/Information Desk is moving back up to the front entrance, effective Apr. 7, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays.
- The front parking lot, for emergency patients, outpatients and some visitor parking, now extends across the front of the hospital from North Street to Kitchener Street. Vehicles will continue to enter and exit the front lot off North Street only. The majority of public and patient parking will continue to be in the Allied Health Centre lot, also off North Street. All patients and visitors parking in the Allied Health Centre parking lot should continue to use one of the two entrances to the Allied Health building and the tunnel to gain access to the hospital.
- The opening of the front doors as the main walk-in entrance means that the temporary main entrance at the lower level off North Street will return to its former use as a secondary and staff entrance. As well, the lower parking lot off North Street will be designated for physicians only. There will no longer be 15-minute or drop-off parking in this area for the public.
- Ambulatory Care patients (as is the current practice) are not required to report to the new registration area at the front entrance. These patients will continue to report directly to the area/location providing the service. This includes the following in the new Ambulatory Care Centre - Surgical Day Care/Day Surgery; Medical Day Stay; Fracture/Ortho Clinic; Oncology Clinic; ENT Clinic; Opthalmology Clinic; Urology Clinic; Niagara Diabetes Centre and Pre-Op Clinic. Signage is posted to direct patients to the correct area.
- A new change in the way Diagnostic Imaging & Cardiorespiratory patients register is also occurring. Patients booked for Diagnostic Imaging & Cardiorespiratory Services will now report directly to Patient Registration at the front entrance upon arrival to the hospital.
- Emergency Department (ED) Registration staff, located in the Emergency Department, will register emergency patients only. During weekends and off hours for the front lobby Patient Registration, all patients will be directed to ED Registration.
"To assist our patients and members of the public in the transition and relocation of services, volunteers have generously stepped forward to offer their support in the clinic areas during weekdays," Demizio said. "I sincerely thank our patient registration greeters for their continuous help to enhance patient flow and care."
"I also want to thank our patients, visitors, staff, physicians and volunteers for their patience and assistance during these extensive renovations. The new areas of the hospital have been long-awaited and needed, and we are delighted to be open for business."
Total construction/renovation cost of the Jeff Morgan Emergency Department, which opened in January 2007, Ambulatory Care Centre and expanded front entrance is approximately $22 million, with significant support from the Greater Niagara General Hospital Foundation. The Foundation has raised more than $9 million toward the total, with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care and the NHS funding the remainder.