Exterior of new St. Mary’s Health Center nearing completion

In the home stretch

Most of the exterior work is complete at the new St. Mary’s Health Center in Jefferson City, and soon the paving of roadways will be done, as will landscaping.

Most of the exterior work is complete at the new St. Mary’s Health Center in Jefferson City, and soon the paving of roadways will be done, as will landscaping. Photo by Julie Smith.

EDITOR'S NOTE: THIS STORY WAS CHANGED AT 5:15 p.m. MONDAY TO CLARIFY TWO NUMBERS USED IN THE ORGINAL STORY.

Officials at St. Mary’s Health Center expect substantial completion of the new facility on Mission Drive in late July with an official move-in date of Nov. 16.

The Jefferson City hospital is currently located in a more than 100-year-old facility at 100 St. Mary’s Medical Plaza.

“We are in the home stretch with a little over five months until opening,” said Tracy O’Rourke, system vice president for strategy, marketing and communications for SSM Health Care’s Mid and Northwest Region.

The new hospital costs $200 million, and O’Rourke said everything is running on schedule and on budget.

She said the exterior of the building is near completion, and crews are in the process of pouring site concrete and installing landscaping to rejuvenate the campus.

The campus is located on 110 acres and will initially have nearly a mile of walking trails that will be open to the public.

“We (will) encourage people to come to the campus,” O’Rourke said. “It’s supposed to draw the community, whether they need services or not.”

She said finishing work inside the building continues, such as wall protection and flooring. Crews are checking that all fixtures and systems are working properly.

The 300,000-square-foot facility has all-private patient rooms, and every room has a view.

It will have three entrances — visitor, emergency and outpatient.

O’Rourke said the hospital will be decorated in calming, healing colors.

“It will have hints of whimsy, but for the most part stay true to the community,” she said.

She said construction will be substantially completed in late July, allowing hospital officials and staff to begin transition work and training prior to opening.

“Any move takes a lot of work, but synchronizing the move of a hospital from one campus to another takes a team of experts,” O’Rourke said.

More than a year ago, the hospital launched a transition operations planning team to focus on transitioning to the new building.

“Each department was evaluated based on how they work today, and how they will work in the new facility, focusing on improved efficiency and work flows,” O’Rourke said. “From that work, we’ve created individual department “playbooks” that will be their plan for moving into the new hospital.

The hospital also has a move team focused on the logistics and communications required to physically move from one location to another.

“This work will include all the training, the coordination and the test runs ahead of move day,” O’Rourke said.

She said the test runs will involve how to go about transitioning patients and having two emergency departments running at once.

We’ll have to be in very close connection with EMS, police and fire,” O’Rourke said.

It’s still unknown how the hospital’s old campus will be re-purposed.

In January, St. Mary’s officials signed a memorandum of understanding and announced they would be willing to donate the current site and building to the state early next year. The two parties still must agree to a final contract controlling that donation and property transfer.

For more information about the new St. Mary’s, visit www.lethealingbegin.com/newstmarys/. The hospital will host an open house for the public Nov. 1-2.

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