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CGH unveils new Observation Unit on Sunday

Tours of it and new pain clinic will be given

Published: Saturday, May 31, 2014 1:15 a.m. CDT

STERLING – CGH Medical Center will have an open house Sunday to unveil its new 11-bed Observation Unit, which goes into use Monday.

In the outpatient Observation Unit, health care providers can treat, monitor, and perform tests to evaluate patients’ conditions for up to 23 hours to determine whether they need to be admitted as in-patients or can go home, CGH said in a news release. Patients will be sent to the unit if they require testing beyond what is done in the Emergency Department. Those kinds of cases would include low-risk chest pain, kidney stones, asthma, fainting spells, dizziness, dehydration, mild trauma, and abdominal change.

“Based on successful models around the U.S., observation units reduce patient and hospital costs, reduce chances of infection, and help avoid or reduce return trips to the ED and/or readmissions,” Julie Morse, director of case management and population health at CGH, said in the release. “It should also help free up exam rooms in the ED that were previously occupied by patients being observed or monitored.”

Whether a patient has inpatient or outpatient status affects how much is paid for hospital services, and might affect Medicare coverage if a patient gets in a skilled nursing facility.

To make room for the Observation Unit, CGH has moved its Outpatient/Pain Clinic Department to a new location in the hospital. The department is where staff and physicians work with patients suffering chronic pain.

Both new areas, on the second and third floors, will be open for tours from 1 to 3 p.m. There will be light refreshments.

Wound center receives honors

The CGH Wound Healing and Hyperbaric Oxygen Treatment Center is celebrating recent honors and is participating in the first Healogics National Wound Care Awareness Week (June 2-6).

The center has received for the third consecutive year the Center of Distinction Award and for the second consecutive year a Center of Excellence honor. The latter award is given top wound care centers that excel in key performance indicators.

The CGH center, which offers advanced therapies to patients suffering from chronic wounds, has been ranked among the top 15 percent of wound centers nationwide.

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