Hospital Expansion a Long Process

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Built 41 years ago, Neshoba General Hospital is showing its age, not just in appearance but in available space. That is why hospital officials are moving forward with the planning stages of a possible expansion.

"We had one of six planning meetings to determine the scope and estimated cost of the project," said Lonnie Graeber, Hospital Administrator.

The expansion will focus on several key departments, one of those being surgery. There are only two rooms, one for major procedures and the other for scope procedures. Another key area is the emergency room. The hospital sees nearly 18,000 emergency patients a year in just four rooms.

"They are having to constantly scramble and move patients around and sometimes treat them in the hallways. We have a particular need to move forward, especially in the emergency room aspect of it," said Graeber.

The planners are looking 20 years in advance so the hospital can grow. They are also keeping in mind it’s a business. They hope to update patient rooms, making them nice and giving it a practical competitive edge to serve the community.

The process will not be a short one; once the planning process is done, the project has to be approved by the hospital board of trustees and then the county board of supervisors. Then there comes the problem of finding the money to pay for it. Either way, hospital officials agree the expansion is desperately needed.