Saint Francis invests $1M in orthopedic expansion

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Saint Francis Hospital Memphis has completed a $1 million renovation of its orthopedic floor and created the Joint & Spine Center.

To create the space, the entire 22,503 square feet on the fourth floor was gutted and rebuilt, said Saint Francis spokesman Brent Baugus.

Demolition began in February and construction got underway in mid-April.

The new center has 18 two-room suites and five single rooms.

When it operated as the Neurological Orthopedic Specialty Unit it had 44 rooms, said Don Monteith, nurse manager for the center. Besides creating two-rooms suites, the center will feature a classroom with seating for 10 to 20 and a full kitchen.

The newly designed space is part of a new approach to care intended to be more patient friendly and to speed up the recovery process, Monteith said.

“This is just taking it to the next level,” said Monteith, who has found himself in the orthopedic unit twice for hip surgeries following bike accidents.

As part of the changed model, patients will be encouraged to identify a friend or relative to serve as a “coach” who will walk with them throughout the process from pre-admission to recovery after the surgery, Monteith said.

Saint Francis hopes to reduce the length of stay from the current four to five days down to three or four as part of the enhanced coaching process.

The two-room suites, each with separate bathrooms and a fold-out bed in the additional room, are meant to provide a more comfortable and private area for visitors and the coach, Monteith said.

The renovation of the fourth floor is part of Saint Francis’ long-time effort to renovate each of the six patient floors in what is known as the Thompson Wing, Baugus said.

He could not immediately say which floors had been renovated but several have been, though the orthopedic floor is the first one to undergo such a dramatic change, he said.

Saint Francis will open the floor to the public for an open house Tuesday at 10 a.m. with tours until 2 p.m.

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