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Officials: Bigger, Better ER Room Headed to Bryan

BRYAN, Texas A new high-tech Emergency room is coming to Bryan, and officials with St. Joseph Hospital say the facility could help save more lives.

"Our emergency department treats over 60,000 patients needing trauma and non-trauma services each year," said Saint Joseph Health System CEO Odette Bolano.

Bolano said since the emergency room became a Trauma Level 2 about six months ago, a new bigger and better facility is a necessity in Brazos County.

"The new facility will double the size of our current emergency room," said Bolano.

The $21 million emergency facility will be built on the Bryan campus. Some of the features include more patient and staff rooms, extra parking and a new helicopter landing pad.

St. Joseph flies one helicopter from the Bryan hospital, but helicopters from several surrounding counties often make use of the landing pad. The hospital has a couple of options when another helicopter flies in. They can move their helicopter off the landing pad to make room for another landing. Officials with the hospital said that option costs about $3,000 each time, and they move the helicopter two or three times a month on average. Another option is to shut down a part of 29th Street to make a landing zone.

The addition of a second landing pad should alleviate the problem.

"Seconds matter when you're talking about the management of trauma patients," said Dr. Adiar de Berry-Carlisle, Trauma Program Medical Director at St. Joseph. "It is going to process these patients with cutting-edge, state-of-the-art equipment and speed. And that's key to the management of trauma patients."

Bryan Mayor Jason Bienski said as the city grows, the need for a new facility grows.

"This new trauma center will allow us to be prepared for continued growth," said Bienski. "And reassure businesses, industries and new residents here that we have proper medical facilities right here at home in the Brazos Valley region."

Ottinger said for now, no new jobs will come with the new facility.

"We have adequate staffing. And the current emergency room will run as it is now until we open the new facility in 2015," said Ottinger.

Ottinger said new jobs are likely as the need continues to grow.

Construction is expected to get started in Spring of 2015, and should finish up sometime in mid 2015.

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