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University of Iowa News Release


March 26, 2008

UI Hospitals and Clinics to open new Emergency Treatment Center

Emergency medicine specialists at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics will begin caring for patients in the new Emergency Treatment Center (ETC) April 2.

The original 21,000-square-foot ETC opened in 1978. It was designed to accommodate 20,000 patient visits per year, but ETC staff treated 40,000 patients last year.

The new $30 million facility encompasses 60,000 square feet and is built to handle 60,000 patient visits per year. The project, involving multiple construction phases, began in February 2005. When the new clinical area opens to the public on April 2, crews will renovate the existing facility. The project is slated for final completion in 2009.

The new ETC features a patient and family-centered atmosphere, providing a personal, private experience for each patient. Spacious, quiet, non-threatening patient care areas encourage family involvement and assure patient confidentiality.

Multiple private triage and registration areas promote efficient, confidential interaction with patients entering and leaving the ETC. Improved parking and access will also enhance the experience of patients and visitors. The new facility also incorporates tracking devices, entrance and exit controls, and advanced security cameras.

Designers incorporated features to provide the most efficient flow for patients and staff in and out of the 28 spacious, private patient rooms, half with private restrooms. There are three major critical care rooms and three specialized trauma rooms, each able to accommodate two stretchers.

The new ETC provides two rooms for psychiatric emergencies and one specialty room for ophthalmologic and dental emergencies. Special accommodations are available for evaluations of sexual assault victims, management of bariatric patients, and observation of patients with chest pain. Designated areas for pediatric and urgent care are also included in the facility.

The expanded nursing station, now four times larger than the current area, provides an unencumbered area for staff and specialty service consultations. Staff members also have visible and accessible room layouts, strategic equipment placement and user-friendly work areas. The width of the hallways has been increased from eight feet to 10 feet.

STORY SOURCE: Joint Office for Marketing and Communications, University of Iowa Health Care, 200 Hawkins Drive, Room E110 GH, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1009

MEDIA CONTACT: Tom Moore, 319-356-3945,