St. Luke’s Allentown Campus is undergoing a major facility renovation and expansion to accommodate increases in emergency patients. The renovation will include relocating the ER entrance to improve access and adding a new waiting area and treatment areas. Advanced LifeAire technology will purify the air and create negative air flow, adding yet another measure of safety from infections for patients, visitors and caregivers, a first in any hospital ER in Pennsylvania.
LifeAire is the industry’s most advanced equipment for keeping patients safe from airborne pathogens by removing COVID, anthrax and other infections. The hospital’s fifth floor was the first patient care unit in the country outfitted with these Allentown-designed and manufactured purifiers.
Also, for the convenience of patients, the ER patient entrance will be relocated from the north side of the hospital, facing Hamilton Street, to the southeast corner, on Maple Street and adjacent to the hospital’s main entrance.
“In keeping with St. Luke’s mission of treating our patients as our first priority, this location will make access easier for those who are coming from the parking deck to find either the ER or main hospital entrance,” says Bill Moyer, president of St. Luke’s Allentown Campus. The ambulance entrance will remain on the hospital’s north side.
A 20,000 square-foot addition, and partial reconfiguration, of the ER will add nine private patient bays—increasing them to a total 41-- and five “results waiting” lounge chairs to the often-bustling department.
The current emergency department, with 32 patient bays, has become too small to handle frequent surges of patients, says Christopher Stromski, MD, chief of the emergency room. Sometimes during busy hours or days, patients unfortunately must wait for treatment or an inpatient bed in alternative treatment spaces.
"By expanding patient treatment space, we will seek to improve the emergency care experience for our patients who come here during some of the worst days of their lives,” says Ryan Kloss, RN, the department’s patient care manager.
Moyer says the upsized ER will be able to accommodate as many as 70, 000 patients per year, which is expected to become the norm there in the near future. The project will cost approximately $6.3 million and is expected to be completed late this summer or early in the fall.
“We have increasing demand for our services from the residents of Allentown, who put their trust in us,” Moyer adds. “We want to continue to provide them with the best care possible, making sure they feel safe and secure.”