Beatrice Community Hospital & Health Center to expand

Posted By: Lauren Fabrizi

Since the Beatrice Community Hospital and Health Center opened its new location about three years ago, it’s seen a rapid increase in patients.

“At this point, if we continue to grow the way we are, we are out of space,” CEO Thomas Sommers said.

Sommers said the Pediatrics Clinic alone has increased by 128 percent. That means staff sees about 4,500 children visits a year.

In Beatrice, the hospital is the only place people can see a pediatrician. The same goes for OB-GYNs. That’s why the hospital needs to expand those areas.

“Everything we’re doing here is more how we can better serve our patients,” practice administrator Eric Trusty said.

The expansion will take up 17,500 square feet at the north end of the hospital. Parking spots in that area will be moved to the east side. The project allows for additional spots, as well.

Right now, the Women and Children’s clinic has 12 exam rooms. That number will double.

The hospital’s Infusion Clinic, which treats cancer patients, along with Women and Childen’s Clinic, are both on the 2nd floor. With the expansion, they’ll move to the ground level with curbside access.

It’s something expecting mother Ashton Earwood looks forward to.

“Instead of going up the stairs or having the elevator wait,” Earwood said. “It’d be easier to walk in and be right there.”

The expansion will cost $7.2 million and will be privately funded. Construction workers expect to break ground this spring. It should be up and going by summer 2016.