SHERIDAN — The Sheridan Memorial Hospital Board of Trustees voted Wednesday to approve three capital renovation projects totaling about $332,000.
Facilities for the Sheridan Women’s Clinic, Big Horn Mountain Medicine and a new urgent care track in the emergency department are set to be updated as part of the plan.
Hospital CEO Mike McCafferty said work will begin within the next several weeks. Hospital administrators hope to have the projects completed later this summer.
The Sheridan Women’s Clinic currently houses two doctors, but a third is expected to arrive in the fall. Additional growth is also on the horizon.
“We see that space in the future as a four-physician clinic,” McCafferty told the board.
As part of the project, a former spa will be renovated in order to allow for additional space. The project is expected to cost just under $70,000 and is scheduled to be completed Aug. 1.
The Big Horn Mountain Medicine project will involve the remodeling of the former free clinic space in a building across the street from the main hospital campus in preparation for the addition of four internists between July and September.
While admittedly a temporary solution for the hospital, McCafferty said the project represented the most cost-effective option for balancing the need for additional space with existing budgetary concerns.
“Given our financial circumstances…we thought it was prudent to take a step back from bigger expansion,” he said.
McCafferty estimated the project would allow for a newly feasible workspace for the next three years, after which point a more cost-intensive construction project will likely be considered.
Additional office space and 14 exam rooms will be added to the clinic, and although the project is slated to cost about $162,000, 63 percent of those costs represent equipment, furniture and other movable pieces that will carry over into later expansion efforts.
“We felt this was a more prudent strategy than going into a great deal of debt,” McCafferty said.
Additionally at Wednesday’s meeting, the board approved a project to research, design and put into operation an urgent care track near the hospital’s emergency department as a way of allowing patients suffering from less severe symptoms to access care more quickly and at a lower cost than they would in the emergency room.
Current construction estimates range from $95,000 to $105,000.
Board members said the hospital will work to keep charges to a minimum and allow for a walk-in environment that stresses high levels of customer service.
Once launched, the facility is scheduled to operate between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and will be staffed each shift with a physician or physician’s assistant, a registered nurse and a patient service representative to help with insurance documentation and patients’ flow through the clinic.
Board members said they hope to have the unit open for business sometime in August.