On Thursday, doctors at Baystate Medical Center went through a full-scale test run of how to take care of patients in its new emergency and trauma center, set to open on Dec. 3.
"We don't know how our team is going to respond in a new environment. We don't know if the equipment is going to work properly, so we're here today to test those things," said Dr. Reginald Alouidir, a surgeon at Baystate Medical Center.
Baystate's new 72,000-square-foot emergency and trauma center has 94 patient rooms.
Baystate officials said the old emergency center saw close 114,000 people in 2011.
This bigger facility will help doctors accommodate patients more effectively.
"We now have more rooms…we have now much more of a calm environment, we have more equipment with this ER...we should be able to do a much better job for the population," Alouidir said.
There are also now 10 bays for ambulances, seven more than the existing facility.
Not only that, but there will also be a rooftop helipad that Baystate officials said will help patients get the care they need faster.
"Before, our helipad was on the ground, which means that we had to bring them across a parking lot to actually get here. We actually had to stop traffic from coming across. It's really much more efficient and doesn't interfere with anything else," said Niels Rathlev, chair of emergency medicine at Baystate Medical Center.
According to Rathlev, the new facility will also improve the experience for people that come through its doors.
"In the past, I think patients had to make a decision: Do I want to go to a place that is most comfortable, or where it's quiet and lots of privacy? Or do I want to go to a state-of-the-art center where they are equipped to take care of everything? After Monday, they won't have to make that type of decision anymore," Rathlev said.
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