Council is updated on hospital move

Shore Regional Health CEO Ken Kozel

CAMBRIDGE — Shore Regional Health CEO Ken Kozel attended the Dorchester County Council’s meeting May 21 to present an update on the work being done to move medical care facilities from the current hospital to the new site at Cambridge Marketplace.

There have been three significant accomplishments since a July 31, 2018 town-hall meeting, he said. At the top of the list was unanimous approval from the Maryland Health Care Commission for all three required Certificates of Exemption.

“We received that unanimous support on April 18,” Mr. Kozel said. This approval allows Shore Health to move ahead with conversion of the current hospital to a “Freestanding Medical Facility,” (FMF) relocation of medical/surgical inpatient beds to Easton, and relocation of behavioral health inpatient beds to Easton.

“We also have received the University of Maryland Financial Affairs Committee approval,” he said, adding that this board is the one that clears funding for projects of this nature.

“Another important part of this project is actually purchasing the land,” Mr. Kozel said. “We are pleased to announced that the University of Maryland and Fairchild Development have reached a purchase agreement. We fully expect to sign within four months of that closure.”

Mr. Kozel said the FMF would feature the following services:
• 24/7/365 Emergency Department with 22 treatment rooms
• Six observation beds
• Diagnostic services
• Laboratory services
• Cardiac Rehabilitation
• Infusion
• Outpatient Behavioral Health

One change from the original concept for the FMF is that Shore Health is now looking at a single, two-story building rather than two single-story buildings. The ground floor of the current two-story plan would comprise about 43,700 square feet.

Outpatient surgery will be performed on the second floor of the building. “There will be a number of different suites located on that second floor,” he said, including ones for pediatricians, cardiovascular specialists and a multi-specialty area where a variety of doctors will come through on a regular basis. “We are always trying to bring more practitioners to the community, based on community need,” Mr. Kozel said.

There will also be an education room with telemedicine capabilities. “That’s the new wave of trying to access our community members in rural regions like ours, where transportation is a challenge,” he said.

The second floor will be about 37,500 square feet.

A project timeline presented by Mr. Kozel showed construction beginning in February of next year, with completion in June of 2021.

Dave Ryan is editor of the Dorchester Banner. He can be reached at dryan@newszap.com.

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