Doylestown Health celebrated a milestone in the construction of its new Center for Heart and Vascular Care and, with the announcement of a new Center for Critical Care Medicine, reached a turning point in the comprehensive $75 million One Vision: The Campaign for Doylestown Health that is transforming the health system.
The top beam of the steel superstructure was placed on Thursday for the 100,000-square-foot building that will house the nationally-recognized Richard A. Reif Heart Institute when it is complete in Fall 2019.
"We are literally beaming with pride," said President and CEO Jim Brexler, adding that community donors, health system board and foundation members, government officials, staff and volunteers are essential partners in Doylestown Health's transformation. Brexler quickly followed his comment with the announcement that the innovative Richard & Angela Clark Center for Critical Care Medicine will occupy the third floor of the structure, housing a 32-bed, private room ICU.
The Clarks serve as co-chairs of the One Vision along with honorary co-chairs Alex and Pat Gorsky. Each couple has pledged $5 million to the One Vision campaign that also includes a new community center at Pine Run Retirement Community (the first of two phases was complete in August), a new hybrid operating room for vascular procedures (completed in December), expanded operating room suites, and a new outpatient pavilion and main entrance on the hospital campus.
The placement of the top beam drew a large crowd of physicians, associates and community members to witness the event. The top beam was signed by more than 600 supporters. An American flag and an evergreen tree were attached to the beam as it was lifted into place, signifying patriotism, collaboration and growth.
Throughout the erection of the steel, patient rooms and hallways in the vicinity of steel work were closed and reopened as the construction progressed, ensuring the safety of all.
"We never missed a beat, and that's at the core of what we do," said Brexler.
"I feel like a kid on Christmas morning," added Joseph Auteri, MD, medical director for the Heart Institute and chief of cardiac surgery, as the beam was getting ready to be placed. "But what I am most proud of is that patient care, and our concerns for patients and families, is at the center of all our planning and design leading up to today."
While the event was an opportunity to look into the future of Doylestown Health, Board Chairman Joan Parlee reminded the crowd of its historical roots, founded in 1923 by the Village Improvement Association of Doylestown. "I signed the names of the first officers of the VIA on the beam in recognition of their extraordinary vision," Mrs. Parlee said.
About ONE VISION: The Campaign for Doylestown Health
Doylestown Health is beginning a bold new chapter as we approach our second century of healthcare delivery. To honor our centennial, Doylestown Health has launched an ambitious $75 million comprehensive campaign, ONE VISION: The Campaign for Doylestown Health to elevate the patient experience to new heights and unlock our full potential to deliver exceptional care.
Philanthropic support of ONE VISION: The Campaign for Doylestown Health will fund transformational renovation and expansion across the Doylestown Hospital and Pine Run campuses and will help chart the course for the next generation of patients, providers, and technology. For more information, visit the Doylestown Health Foundation website or call 215.345.2009.