After much anticipation, the $19 million Herrin Hospital expansion project broke ground on Friday, March 4, 2005. The expansion and improvements to the hospital are projected to be complete in two years.
The plans call for construction of a new three-floor (counting basement) expansion of the hospital southward, extending across Lyerla Drive and into the existing parking lot. The new wing will allow many services to be more accessible and convenient for patients. Outpatient services will be moved to the main floor and space will be increased for rehabilitation services.
The main floor of the addition will be used for outpatient therapy, physical rehabilitation medicine clinic and expansion of the imaging department. The therapy area will have a larger gym than the existing one and, eventually, a therapy pool.
The second floor of the addition will be used for inpatient beds for medical surgical and acute rehabilitation.
Becky Ashton, administrator, said that the hospital staff and administration are excited about the expansion. “We’re looking forward to seeing Herrin Hospital through its next phase of development. This facility has a long history of service to the surrounding community and we’re happy to be able to expand our commitment to improve the health and well being of the people we serve.”
Herrin Hospital is an 89-bed acute care facility that has served Herrin and its surrounding communities since 1913. A service of Southern Illinois Healthcare, the hospital is home to over 135 physicians. The hospital is known for its orthopedic surgery as well as high quality cardiology and cardiac rehabilitation services through an affiliation with Prairie Heart Institute, one of the premier heart centers in Illinois. It is also home to the acclaimed Acute Rehabilitation Center, a strategic alliance with the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. Through this alliance patients recovering from stroke and injury receive high quality rehabilitation care close to home.
This is not the first expansion the hospital has seen since it was founded. Originally built in 1914 as Baker-Gardiner Hospital, it was purchased by Southern Illinois Hospital Corporation in 1946. As part of that newly formed not-for-profit corporation, the name was changed to Herrin Hospital. Forty-eight beds were added in 1973 as part of a new addition worth a little over one million dollars and in 1985, another $3.8 million expansion was completed.