- Associated Press - Saturday, August 26, 2017

RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) - A $200 million transformation of Rapid City Regional Hospital has begun with the completion of a three-level parking garage.

The Rapid City Journal reports the most profound upcoming changes include the move of the hospital’s main entrance from the north side to the south side of the building; integration of inpatient and outpatient cardiac care services; expansion of the emergency department and the addition of another parking garage.

“Two years from now what we’re going to see is something completely different, better access for patients and better access for all of our clinical teams,” Paulette Davidson, the hospital’s chief operating officer, said at a Tuesday gathering inside a recently completed 754-space parking facility just south of the main hospital complex. “And this is just the beginning.”

The new, three-story front entrance will be made with glass, and the 36,000-square-foot emergency department will have more patient beds and medical offices.

The new emergency department will be 150 percent larger than the current space, which is already the busiest in the state with 85,000 visits per year. It’ll include five trauma exam rooms, more than 30 private exam rooms, enclosed parking for six ambulances and elevator access to a rooftop helipad.

A 30,000-square-foot intermediate care cardiac unit with outpatient offices of the Heart and Vascular Institute will be located on the level above the new emergency department.

“It’s going to be a fantastic change and will continue to advance the level of cardiac care that people have become accustomed to,” said Joseph Tuma, a cardiologist.

The project is slated for completion in 2020.

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Information from: Rapid City Journal, https://www.rapidcityjournal.com

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