You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.


  • ePAPER

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and interactive features. Starting at just 99c for 8 weeks.


Welcome to

Your source for Clark and Champaign counties’ hometown news. All readers have free access to a limited number of stories every month.

If you are a News-Sun subscriber, please take a moment to login for unlimited access.

Urbana hospital gets $250K rennovation

Better patient care expected from changes

A local charitable group that has been giving money to Mercy Memorial Hospital for more than 70 years has given nearly a quarter of a million dollars to improve local health care.

The Mercy Memorial Hospital Association donated $249,894 to add fast-track emergency rooms and a safe room for suicidal or homicidal patients.

“It’s a great facility for the city of Urbana. We needed to upgrade our emergency facility,” City of Urbana Mayor Bill Bean said Wednesday. “The Mercy Foundation board donating the money to put this all this together has just been great for the city of Urbana. Needed desperately.”

There are four new fast-track emergency rooms to help deal with patients that do not need all the tools of a traditional ER room.

Patients who come with coughs, colds or sore throats will no longer have to wait in the lobby while physicians deal with sicker patients, emergency department team leader Amanda Brannon said.

In the three weeks they have been using the new space, the emergency room’s “left without being seen” rate has decreased by half, according to Brannon.

The hospital’s medical director, Joan Kolodzik, said these new fast-track beds will help with patient flow and patient throughput for the hospital.

“Less time spent in the lobby, faster triage, faster treatment, faster discharge and that all adds to a better patient experience,” she said.

Kolodzik said emergency room wait times were one of the most common complaints the hospital had.

The other major addition to the hospital was a new safe room for behaviorally challenged patients.

The idea behind the room is there is nothing the patient can hurt themselves, staff or visitors with. Nurses can lock all the medicine cabinets in the room, and there is audio and video surveillance in the room.

The room is for suicidal and homicidal patients.

“Those patients do walk through our doors, and we are committed to take care of them in a safe manner, but we just didn’t have that before,” Kolodzik said.

Besides providing better patient care, the Mercy Memorial Hospital Association hopes this helps the Urbana economy.

The four trustees of the board are Ed Stocksdale, his son Greg Stocksdale, Bob McConnell and Jim Wilson. David Smith is the trustees’ medical adviser and helps them find the best way to allocate the money to the hospital.

The association bought the land where the hospital is now in 1941, but the building was delayed until 1954 because of WWII.

The money the group donated this year all came from stock earnings of the group’s fund for the hospital.

They take great pride in investing in the hospital, because they remember a time when the Mercy system thought about leaving Urbana. They said the hospital is special to them and the Urbana community, because it was originally funded and continues to be improved by the citizens of Urbana, not the government or a business.

“A lot of communities can’t say they have a hospital,” Jim Wilson said.

The mayor said the hospital is important to Urbana, not only for the local health care, but it also helps economic development.

“Having a hospital like this and having Mercy system here tells prospective businesses, we are here and we are here for you. It makes it more of a community having our own hospital,” Bean said.

Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Community News

Texas parents concerned about bathroom cameras in park
Texas parents concerned about bathroom cameras in park

Concerned parents are questioning why cameras were installed in a public restroom at a Texas park. >> Read more trending news Patrick McGrath thought teenagers were joking about security video cameras mounted inside the bathrooms at the Springtown Park, until he saw them for himself, KDFW reported. "To see who's going in is what they're...
Disabled teenage girl denied trip to Disneyland
Disabled teenage girl denied trip to Disneyland

A 14-year-old California girl who attends a special education class was denied a chance to go to Disneyland on a school field trip because the bus transporting the students did not have a wheelchair lift, her parents claim.  >> Read more trending news Madison Wolanyk was born with cerebral palsy, spina bifida and autism and needs a wheelchair...
Mom writes school, says daughter is ‘done with homework’
Mom writes school, says daughter is ‘done with homework’

We know what you’re thinking: Where was this mom when we had stacks of homework to do as kids? >> Read more trending news Bunmi Laditan, a mother, author and blogger, sent an email to her 10-year-old daughter’s school, WJW reported, telling officials that “my kid is done with homework.” Laditan told teachers she is...
Commentary: Dairy cows or canaries?
Commentary: Dairy cows or canaries?

Those Wisconsin dairy cows at the center of another trade kettle now boiling between the United States and Canada, a friend suggests, aren’t really black-and-white Holsteins. They’re tiny, yellow canaries, he opines, and their tweets — not President Donald J. Trump’s — are a warning that America’s reign as the world&rsquo...
Woman accused of embezzling $9,000 one pizza at a time
Woman accused of embezzling $9,000 one pizza at a time

A Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, woman is accused of embezzling close to $9,000 from Mazzio’s Pizza. Officials said Diana Pruett managed to pull in the money one pizza at a time through refunds. A manager at the store discovered something suspicious with the number of returns and refunds. Police were called in. When they contacted Pruett, she reportedly...
More Stories