UPDATE: Marietta Memorial's ER in Belpre Celebrates One Year

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UPDATE 7/29/2015 5:22 PM

Marietta Memorial is celebrating a milestone Wednesday as Belpre's emergency room celebrates its one year anniversary. The emergency department opened up in July of 2014.

Health officials say the department exceeded its expectations for their patient population.

The hospital serves an average of 83 patients a day which is quickly growing as patients are coming from areas outside of Belpre.

The emergency department also has a runway for medical flights. something they use about three times a month.

Officials say it's been a great success for the first year and a huge asset to the community.

"It's exciting for us, It has been a very positive impact for this community here in Belpre. It has been a very exciting journey for all of us here in the department seeing the positive impact that were having on the community here," says Clinical nurse manager, Lori Williams.

Health officials say Belpre hasn't taken away any patients from the main campus in Marietta, they've actually created their own population on the south eastern part of Washington County.

UPDATE 8/1/2014 4:30 PM

Big day for the City of Belpre.

People needing medical help now have access to a brand new facility designed to give them quicker access to emergency care.

Marietta Memorial's ER on its Belpre campus opened Friday.

Doctors say patients are coming in and out at a steady pace, a lot of walk-ins and some people receiving medication.

The $25 million ER has a full lab, a CT scanner and ultrasound equipment.

It's also open 24 hours a day and has 20 beds.

Doctors say they're ready to serve.

"Morale is very, very high. People are excited about the opportunity. The team is really working well together right now and everyone was so excited to be here," says Dr. Dan Breece,

Dr. Breece is the ER medical director.

He helped with the facility's design.

He says they're adding an observation unit to the ER in the next two or three months.

UPDATE 7/30/2014 5:05 PM

A new emergency room is open in Belpre.

It's part of the Memorial Health System.

And emergency responders say it's about time.

The closest hospitals are in Marietta and Parkersburg.

Firefighters in Belpre say in an emergency, that distance could be the difference between life and death.

"Depending on where they are in the city, we can get them to definitive care, especially on this end of town, up towards the Farson area. It'd be a lot quicker. They could be diagnosed a lot faster, and taken care of a lot quicker," says Jim Mason, Assistant Fire Chief for Belpre.

Local residents pitched in hundreds of thousands of dollars toward the $25 million ER.

Sunday, the hospital hosted an open house.

People got a tour of the ER, meeting physicians and staff.

Firefighters say this facility will save countless lives and make their jobs as emergency responders a little easier.

UPDATE 7/28/2014 11:30 AM

Hospital officials in Washington County say patients will soon have easier access to emergency health care.

Marietta Memorial Hospital's Belpre campus will open a new emergency room facility this week.

Local folks pitched in hundreds of thousands of dollars toward the $25 million ER.

Sunday, the hospital hosted an open house.

People got a tour of the ER, meeting physicians and staff.

The hospital says the facility will help the community now and for generations to come.

"We know that this population has a need for these kinds of services and we look forward to providing them. This is a project that we've been working on for well over a year, and to see all of your effort come to fruition, and to see that people are excited that we'll be here for them, it really means a lot to the staff," says Jennifer Offenberger, Director of Marketing and Public Relations for the Memorial Health System.

The ER has a full laboratory, a CT scanner, ultrasound equipment and radiology units.

Ambulance service will be provided 24 hours a day.

The new ER begins service Friday.

The Belpre campus of the Memorial Health System is getting to be larger than a lot of free-standing hospitals. The latest planned addition is a 57,000 square foot building, housing a new 24-hour, year-round emergency department, to be opened in the spring of next year.

Memorial's administrator cites a ten percent annual increase in e.r. patients at the Marietta campus.

"A lot of that growth has come from Belpre and Parkersburg as they drive up for our health services," says Scott Canley, President and CEO, Memorial Health System. "I can't say what percentage that is, but I believe it reflects our position in the community."

Memorial says it's the first full-service emergency department built away from a hospital in this area. The system last year opened an urgent care facility at the same location along U.S. route 50.

" We've looked at models in Columbus for Ohio Health and Mount Carmel System," says Dan Breece, D.O., the emergency department's medical director. "There is an apparent need for care and access to care in this community and this region of the county."

Construction is nearly complete on a 25,000 square foot building which will house a comprehensive pain management center. That is to be opened in july.

"The cooperation we've received from Marietta Memorial, the PM Company, has been a blessing to this entire city," says Belpre Mayor Mike Lorentz.

Especially in terms of the economy. Mayor Lorentz says the opening of the emergency center will make Marietta Memorial the city's largest employer.

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