Seton Medical Center unveils multi-million dollar expansion


by QUITA CULPEPPER / KVUE News and photojournalist KENNETH NULL

Posted on September 10, 2013 at 5:47 PM

Updated Tuesday, Sep 10 at 6:21 PM

AUSTIN -- The city's largest hospital is growing with Austin.

A multi-million dollar expansion at Seton Medical Center in Central Austin will mean better care for patients and an easier time for those who take care of them.

“This is just the first phase, there's more to come,” said Dr. Jordan Weingarten. “We have the money to move forward and do what's necessary here.”

On Tuesday morning Seton hosted a preview of its $48 million renovation to the intensive care, intermediate care, and cardiology units. 

Now the 3rd and 4th floors will usher in a new era of health care at the decades old hospital.

“We've provided new big rooms. They're designed with the family in mind, as well as the patient, with places for the families to sit, to stay to actually even sleep,” Dr. Weingarten said.

Dr. Weingarten says in Austin and Central Texas, the population continues to grow, and the area has an increasing number of older patients needing care.

“There's more things we can do for patients, things that were untreatable 20 years ago can now be treated,” Dr. Weingarten said. “Technology is increasing, we have more equipment more things we can bring to take care of our patients.”

The new technology is hard to miss. There's a patient command center where nurses can monitor those getting care and instantly see and respond when something is wrong.

There's also portable monitoring devices so patients can move around freely.

“You'll no longer be tied to the wall,” said Nursing Instructor Sherri Morey.

The $48 million expansion added 60 new rooms. Some of those rooms include a new lift that will help patients get in and out of bed more easily.

The old tracks could move the patient from side to side. Now they can go forward and backward as well.

“Now, we have a large square to move them around in and get them positioned where they want to sit, versus where the track makes them sit,” Morey said. “Our staff is not going to be injured because we won't be lifting them.”

Seton will start using the new rooms on Tuesday, September 11.