Donors Make It Possible to Create a New ED to Serve the Community

January 12, 2015

Thanks to the generosity of donors, emergency services at Saint Peter’s Healthcare System are delivered in a new facility. 

With the recent renovation of the Adult Emergency Department at Saint Peter’s University Hospital, a major renovation and construction project has come closer to completion. The last phase of the project, the renovation of an observation unit, is scheduled to be completed next year. 

Last month the Emergency Department and its Fast Track were officially dedicated in the names of its benefactors – the Robert and Joan Campbell Adult Emergency Department and the Sharon and John H. Hajjar, MD, Sovereign Medical Services Fast Track. 

Last year the Dorothy B. Hersh Pediatric Emergency Department was opened following renovations made possible by a generous donation from the Dorothy B. Hersh Foundation. 

In addition to the major gifts from the Hersh, Campbell and Hajjar families, members of the community and physicians and employees of Saint Peter’s Healthcare System have made donations to underwrite the ED project. 

According to James S. Choma, chief development officer, Saint Peter’s Healthcare System, and executive director of the Saint Peter’s Foundation, there are still naming opportunities available into 2015 when the capital campaign is expected to conclude. “We are very grateful to our benefactors, physicians, nurses and employees for their generous support of the Emergency Department capital campaign,” says Choma. “In anticipation of raising the additional $2.5 million needed to reach our goal, we thank all those who will continue to be fundraising ambassadors for Saint Peter’s, contributing to the project and helping to spread the news about the need to continue raising funds.” 

Among the features of the new ED are private rooms. The area was designed with input from the physicians and nurses who treat patients in the department. “We wanted to create a place that enabled us to practice the highest-quality emergency medicine we all envision,” explains Derek Schaible, MD, interim chair of Emergency Medicine. “Second, we wanted to create an Emergency Department where we would want to be treated if we needed care.” 

The $17 million renovation has created three treatment areas each dedicated to acute care, women’s health, and rapidtreatment. The acute-care bay is designed to treat emergencies such as heart attack and stroke. Early pregnancy complications and OB/GYN emergencies will be treated in the women’s health area. Patients in need of IV fluids and X-ray imaging will be taken care of in the rapid-treatment section of the Emergency Department in an effort to provide them with more efficient and speedy treatment. 

The new ED also features an EMS Lounge for the first aid and rescue squads and emergency medical services personnel who bring patients to Saint Peter’s, and a redesigned and larger ambulance entrance. 

The renovation project has created New Jersey’s largest pediatric emergency department which opened last year complete with kid-friendly décor, stateof- the-art equipment and spacious private rooms. The hospital hired a full-time child life specialist who uses traditional toys and more modern tools such as iPad tablets to help children and families cope with the anxieties experienced during an ED visit. 

A state-designated acute care children’s hospital, The Children’s Hospital at Saint Peter’s University Hospital provides advanced and comprehensive, specialized services to infants and children. From the specialized care of premature babies in its nationally recognized Neonatal Intensive Care Unit to the many pediatric specialties practiced, providing expert care for children is one of Saint Peter’s chief contributions to the community and the surrounding area since it began caring for patients more than 100 years ago. 

The new Emergency Department is large enough to accommodate 70,000 to 75,000 patients a year, creating shorter wait times while giving patients the space and privacy they deserve. The renovation has almost doubled the size of the adult and pediatric treatment areas, from 18,000 square feet to 29,000 square feet.



For more information about donating to the Emergency Department’s continued renovation or to other Saint Peter’s Healthcare System projects, please contact the Saint Peter’s Foundation at 732-745-8542.

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