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Hospital Board approves construction of a new TRMC patient tower

Tift Regional will expand its main hospital facility

The Hospital Authority of Tift County voted on Wednesday to expand the physical facility of Tift Regional Medical Center (TRMC).

At the regular monthly meeting of the Hospital Authority of Tift County, the nine-member of board of trustees voted unanimously to invest $150 million to construct a four-story tower at TRMC that will include new inpatient units and a new emergency center. Approximately 60 percent of the financing will be through a USDA rural development loan; the remaining 40 percent will be funded through internal reserves.

The Board also selected Adams Management Services Corporation to manage the expansion project. Phase I will consist of the procurement of the general contractor for the project; phase II will include oversight of the construction. Groundbreaking for the new, 263,000 square-foot tower is expected within one year and construction will take approximately two years to complete.

TRHS President/CEO Chris Dorman said the new expansion is needed to address challenges the hospital is facing in meeting patient demand. “Our emergency room was originally designed to accommodate about 20,000 patients per year and we currently see close to 50,000 patients per year,” Dorman said. “The new emergency room will better serve a larger volume of patients, which will decrease wait times. When we have a high census at the hospital, especially during flu season, patients now have to wait for long periods of time to be admitted but with this new tower comes improved capacity.”

“This will be an advanced, contemporary, and patient-friendly facility connected to the current TRMC building,” said Dorman. “It will transform our main entrance on 18th Street. The project will also include some renovations to the current facility to make a seamless connection to the new building. It will not increase our 181-bed acute care licensure, but will offer more private rooms and additional observation beds. Patients won’t have to share a room any longer—which ensures privacy, helps minimize the spread of infection, and enhances overall satisfaction.”

Dorman said the new facility will be aesthetically-pleasing and designed for better patient flow, improving efficiency for clinicians, and enhancing the patient experience. “In improving the patient flow, patients should experience shorter wait times with quicker access to care,” he said. “More private rooms will be available with natural light, creating a more healing environment and a new chapel will provide a quiet, peaceful place for spiritual healing.”

Jimmy Allen, Chairman of the Hospital Authority, said the new facility is needed to accommodate Tift Regional Health System’s growth. “We are excited to invest this money into the existing facility and building the new patient tower on Tift Regional’s main campus.” Allen said. “This will be a state-of-the-art complex for providers to practice medicine, our patients to receive high quality care, and our staff to enjoy day after day.”