Work on new hospital nearly complete

Published 12:00 am Saturday, January 24, 2009

VIDALIA — A company official said the work on the new Promise Hospital of the Miss-Lou location on the Vidalia Riverfront is between 85 and 90 percent complete.

“The project is progressing very well, and we are right on schedule,” Vice President of Operations for Promise Healthcare Lee Huckaby said.

The company expects to move from its current facility near Ferriday to the riverfront location sometime in early spring, Huckaby said.

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“Once the contractor hands over the keys and we start the process of getting our occupancy certificate and all of the regulatory agencies give us the OK, we will begin to relocate our patients,” he said.

Using a conservative estimate, Huckaby said the move would take place approximately 45 days after the contractor notified them of completion.

“We are going to have a wonderful, nice grand opening and invite the community in to have a look before we do the patient relocation,” he said.

Moving patients will be the easiest part of the move from the old to new locations, because the Vidalia facility will have all new equipment, making it ready to receive patients without having to worry about equipment transfers, Huckaby said.

“From office furniture to basic equipment to medical monitoring equipment, everything is brand new,” he said.

How and when to move patients will be set up with the hospital’s ambulance service providers and will be decided based on medical necessity, Huckaby said.

Construction on the $16 million, 49,826 square-foot facility began in December 2007.

When completed, the long-term acute care center will house 48 beds in all private rooms.

A long-term acute care facility is a hospital for patients with severe, long-term injuries or who need extended care beyond that of a traditional hospital stay.

Promise representatives have in the past said the relocation to Vidalia was to be more centrally located to their service area and to allow easier access to the medical community.

The hospital is expected to employ approximately 150 people.

Promise Hospital of the Miss-Lou’s current location is at 6816 U.S. 84, in Ferriday.

The parent company of the hospital, Promise Healthcare, Inc., is located in Boca Raton, Fla.