With unprecedented growth projected for Sussex County, Beebe Healthcare proposes a major expansion to care for its residents
In 2016, Beebe Healthcare celebrated a proud century of providing dedicated, top-flight healthcare to residents of southeastern Sussex County. For the dawn of its second century, however, the institution will not rest on its copious laurels. Instead, Beebe announced plans for the biggest augmentation of operations and services in its history — a proposed $180 million expansion designed to address what will be the future healthcare needs of the region.
In the next five years, the U.S. population is projected to increase 3.8 percent, while the population of Sussex County over the same period is projected to increase almost twice that, to 7.4 percent. Southeastern Sussex County specifically is expected to increase even more, to 9.2 percent five years from now. Those sobering statistics translate to some significant healthcare demands in the region’s future, with oncology needs expected to rise almost 32 percent by 2022, and need for surgical services swelling by almost 63 percent as of 2024. Emergency Department admissions are expected to increase, too, though not to the same degree as either surgical or oncological services.
In response, Beebe Healthcare has devised a sweeping three-pronged proposed strategy to expand its services and operations, with the addition of approximately 270 new medical professionals covering three locations in Sussex County. What follows is a breakdown of the coming enhancements of healthcare in the region that Beebe serves.
I. Savannah Road Campus, Lewes
Situated on the grounds of the health system’s flagship location, at the corner of Savannah Road and 4th Street, this $80 million component will offer a 100,000 sq. ft., four-story facility that will provide 30 private beds on a discrete medical/surgical floor for complex medical and surgical inpatients, with another floor dedicated to an enhanced women’s health center. Two floors will be shelled for future growth or program opportunities. The Lewes campus will remain the home of Beebe’s cardiovascular care, creating a Heart and Vascular Center of Excellence. The new Savannah Road patient wing and pavilion is being made possible in part due to a $10 million donation — one of the largest in the state’s history — from the Rollins family through its Ma-Ran Foundation. The new building, which will be named the Margaret H. Rollins Pavilion, is the latest in a 30-year history of philanthropy to Beebe Healthcare by the Rollins family.
II. Rehoboth Beach Campus
In Rehoboth, Beebe will create a $62 million, 71,000 sq. ft., three-story facility devoted to short-stay surgical procedures, such as Orthopaedic, General and Urologic surgery. The hospital will also be home to The Minimally Invasive Surgical Center of Excellence that will be equipped to handle minimally invasive procedures urologic, orthopaedic, spinal surgery, general surgery and gynecologic procedures. The facility will include a da Vinci surgical robot. The top floor will provide 30 beds devoted to short-stay inpatient surgical procedures (likely three days or less), while the second floor will offer perioperative care, with five operating rooms and between 16 and 20 pre- and post-anesthesia bays. Support services such as food, pharmacy and imaging will be found on the ground floor.
III. Millville Campus, Route 17
South Coastal residents will see development of a Beebe Health Campus on Route 17 near Millville by the Sea that will include an all-new freestanding Emergency Department capable of receiving 10,000–12,000 visits a year. Estimated at $33 million, the 22,000 sq. ft., year-round facility will offer 22 exam bays to start and boast a helipad and an on-site ambulance. The campus will also house a second site of Beebe’s lauded Tunnell Cancer Center that will include infusion therapy and radiation oncology, as well as outreach and support services. The development of these two services will augment the full diagnostic imaging, physical-rehabilitation services, laboratory and walk-in care currently offered in Millville on Route 26.
“Beebe remains committed to expanding with the community and to meeting the healthcare needs of the people who live in and visit the area,” said Jeffrey Fried, FACHE, president and CEO of Beebe Healthcare. “This plan is an innovative response to the expectations of healthcare customers for excellent service provided in convenient locations and to the insurance companies’ requirements that we be as efficient and cost-effective as possible.
“At the end of the day,” Fried continued, “the excellence of service and care at Beebe Healthcare has always come down to something greater than bricks and mortar. The true greatness of Beebe is its people, our most important asset. Our staff have always served the community with such faithful dedication, so it’s our ultimate to make that ongoing mission even easier, so that these amazing people can keep doing this incredible work.”
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