Wayne Memorial unveils new wing

By OWEN WALSH
Posted 9/11/19

HONESDALE, PA — After two years and a $40-million investment, Wayne Memorial Hospital welcomed the public to its newly completed G-Wing Saturday.

Several local, state and federal officials …

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Wayne Memorial unveils new wing

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HONESDALE, PA — After two years and a $40-million investment, Wayne Memorial Hospital welcomed the public to its newly completed G-Wing Saturday.

Several local, state and federal officials and roughly 500 local residents attended the ribbon-cutting ceremony, where hospital officials showed off the 85,000-square-foot tower. The tower houses 50 private, spacious rooms that are equipped with innovative technology, such as digital display boards to enhance communication between patients and hospital staff. Hospital officials say the new rooms will reduce the risk of infection and decrease noise for patients.

A $1.5 million grant through PA’s Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program helped pay for the project, as well as an internal fundraising campaign at the hospital.

Hospital board chair Dirk Mumford spoke about some of the challenges of the project.

“The principal impact on all of us, in one word, was disruption,” he said, mentioning rain delays and parking shortages during the construction process. “It is truly our hope that... you will reflect that these inconveniences have been well justified.”

Rep. Matt Cartwright agreed with that point, lauding the county for investing in healthcare and boosting the regional economy. “This is a bold endeavor that you are bringing to fruition,” he said. Cartwright noted that hospitals are among Pennsylvania’s largest employers—providing one in every 10 jobs in the commonwealth—and equate to billions of dollars in spending each year.

Wayne County Commissioner Joe Adams called the hospital a key component in its ongoing plan for economic development. Adams said the county is supporting Wayne Memorial through a tax refinancing program and by backing $60 million in debt.

Paul Meagher, former chair who served on the board of trustees for 22 years, touched on the life-long importance of the institution for many Honesdale natives.

“I’ve been associated with the hospital for 77 years,” he said. “I’ll be 78 next month.”

Meagher said that, along with a thriving system of schools, reliable access to healthcare is one of the primary concerns for people when they consider moving to an area.

Wayne Memorial will turn 100 years old in 2020. That anniversary will mark the hospital’s next major project, which it’s calling the “second-century fundraising campaign,” an attempt to be proactive about a future problem.

With an aging population, experts predict that, while the country’s need for healthcare professionals will continue to grow, the U.S. will experience a significant shortage of physicians by 2030. Wayne Memorial’s fundraising campaign aims to raise $3 million in order to recruit young medical professionals by helping them with med-school debt, and providing them with state-of-the-art technology and equipment.

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