The Rocking Horse Community Health Center recently completed a $70,000 expansion that will add five new pediatric exam rooms.
Director of Operations, Stacy Lee said the center serves nearly 9,000 pediatric patients. She said sometimes rooms get backed up, so the staff hopes that the increased space will lead to shorter wait times. With the renovation, the number of exam rooms in the pediatric wing increased from 19 to 24.
The new exam rooms were there already, but the spaces were underutilized. The rooms were previously used for assessment of a patient, but not actually diagnosing or treating them.
“It makes it nice for the providers to have everything in the room that’s needed in a visit. From time to time, patients come in with more complicated problems,” Lee said. “They might be having breathing issues and they need more time in the room to get a treatment or maybe an injection.”
Lee said brainstorming for the renovation project started back in the spring, but the actual construction didn’t start until about August. She said once the center switched to online medical records, there was a lot of space in pediatrics that was wasted.
The renovation, which included knocking down walls, cost about $70,000, although Lee said only about $7,000 of that went to new equipment.
In addition to the exam rooms, the renovation also included adding a second nursing station, a second lab space and another weigh station. Lee said the new configuration will also hopefully make day-to-day operations smoother for staff.
OPIOID EPIDEMIC: Rocking Horse gets $50,000 to help kids impacted by drugs
In the previous set up, everyone was funneled to a central desk where they worked. The pediatric wing has about 9 providers, including their support staff.
“[The staff was] sitting on top of each other in our current nursing station,” Lee said. “Instead of everyone coming through the one side, we can split things up a little bit.”
There will be six to eight staff members working in the area, including another physician and a nurse practitioner.
A ribbon cutting ceremony was held at Rocking Horse on Monday afternoon. The center will start to see patients in the new area of pediatrics beginning Tuesday afternoon or Wednesday morning.
Rocking Horse recently added dental care, a pharmacy program and increased addiction care to their services, including receiving a $50,000 grant to help kids impacted by drugs.
Lee also mentioned the expanded space will feature a large piece of artwork from students at the Global Impact STEM Academy across the street.
Thank you for reading the Springfield News-Sun and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to exclusive deals and newsletters.
Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Springfield News-Sun. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.