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CHI Health Good Samaritan’s new emergency center almost open

Published: Sep. 10, 2021 at 7:19 PM CDT
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KEARNEY, Neb. (KSNB) - CHI Health Good Samaritan is taking their advanced trauma department to a whole new level because in just a couple weeks it’s new emergency care center will be opening up.

Good Samaritan President Michael Schnieder said their current emergency department (E.D.) is outdated.

“The current E.D. was built in 1994,” Schnieder said. “It was built for the need at that time but in the last 25 years, things have really changed in emergency medicine.”

Prior to the pandemic, on average they were only seeing 35 to 40 patients per day but now they’re seeing about 55 patients.

“Everybody is very close together and all of the patients are very close together,” said Emergency Room Manager Ashley Ourada about the current ED.

This new emergency room is going to give them more space to provide better care for their patients. The department is moving from their current 7,500 square-foot E.D. to a 20,000 square-foot space.

“It is going to be a transition for the nurses to have to travel a longer distance now to take care of patients,” Ourada said.

Emergency Room Manager Ashley Ourada believes this new E.D. is also going to provide privacy for patients. There are a total of 14 rooms throughout the facility.

“Every patient is going to have a private room where they will be able to close the door or have a curtain,” Ourada said.

More specifically, they have a safety room for people who are in danger of hurting themselves and an entire room dedicated to domestic and sexual violence victims.

“This space is good,” Ourada said. “It’s going to allow us to take care of a few more patients and just the flow of it, how the ambulance comes in, how the patients come in.”

Not to mention with the amount of patients they’ve been seeing throughout this pandemic, Schnieders believes it couldn’t have come at a better time.

“We started this just before the pandemic and we said oh no, but actually as we learned during this worldwide event, that we were able to incorporate it into the new space, so we are better prepared to care for patients in that condition,” Schnieders said.

The new emergency care center at Good Samaritan is set to open on Sept. 28, however they did have a virtual ribbon cutting on Friday. It was requested by a $2 million donor of the project to be named after long-time Kearney Pediatrician Dr. Kenton L. Shaffer.

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