Warfel Construction completed the renovation of UPMC Hanover Hospital’s Emergency Department in early 2023. The project involved the comprehensive demolition of approximately half of the existing emergency department and two other hospital interior spaces to make room for a multi-phased renovation.
The 8,000 sf project includes a new security office, entry vestibule, waiting room, triage, fast-track treatment rooms, staff work rooms, and a dedicated IT/data equipment room. Additionally, the project involved constructing an isolated “Behavioral Health Pod,” which features five patient rooms, a nurse’s station, a lounge-style waiting area, and a restroom. There was a need in the community for a dedicated behavioral health treatment space, and this project helps fulfill that need by providing secure and safe access to those services.
One of the most significant challenges that Warfel faced was working on the project while the emergency room was still operating. The team created a comprehensive phasing plan to minimize the disturbances to patients and their families visiting the emergency department, allowing continued access to occupied areas throughout construction.
However, not everything could be planned for, and the team used creative solutions to maintain a smooth construction schedule. An example of a surprise challenge was when one of the hospital’s existing CT scanners malfunctioned and needed repair. This required the team to shift phasing so that a previously closed corridor could be reopened, allowing access to another department area with another imaging machine.
Warfel overcame the challenges of working on this occupied campus by drawing on their extensive experience working on similar projects. Through this experience, they have learned that early, thoughtful planning benefits the project’s overall success. The team had ample access to the site during the preconstruction process, which assisted them in planning the renovation since existing “as-built” documents were either inaccurate or unavailable.
While working with UPMC project managers onsite, the Warfel team also developed great relationships with the clinical staff, which was a huge benefit for the project. Having insights into the operations of the department along with greater knowledge of the campus helped coordinate construction efforts with those of the emergency department team. This open communication between the staff and Warfel team members allowed completion with minimal disturbances to existing workflows.
In December 2022, the newly-renovated section of the building became partially occupied after a ribbon cutting ceremony was held to acknowledge the behavioral health services now offered within UPMC Hanover Hospital’s emergency department.