ECMC cuts ribbon on new $55 million emergency department

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Buffalo, N.Y. (WBEN) —Erie County Medical Center today celebrated the opening of their new $55 million KeyBank Trauma and Emergency Department, which will double the size of the existing 40-year old facility and feature state-of-the-art technology and equipment for the region’s only Level I Adult Trauma Center.

Originally opened in 1978 to accommodate 35,000-40,000 patients annually, ECMC’s Trauma and Emergency Department now sees nearly 70,000 patients a year, with patient volumes expected to reach over 75,000 annually by 2024.

The new facility, designed by CannonDesign and built by The Pike Company, nearly doubles facility square footage to 54,000sf and will increase treatment space from 36 to 57 stations including 4 dedicated trauma rooms, 2 behavioral health safe rooms, 2 isolation rooms, and 4 medical resuscitation rooms. It features intradepartmental imaging consisting of 2 CT rooms and 2 x-ray rooms, direct access from the hospital’s rooftop helipad, and a care initiation zone to support an enhanced triage model of care.

As the region’s busiest and only Level 1 Adult Trauma and Emergency Department serving the 1.5 million residents of the eight counties of Western New York, the facility serves patients for trauma, emergency psychiatric conditions via ECMC’s Comprehensive Psychiatric Emergency Program (“CPEP”) and traditional medical conditions and it is best suited of any of the region’s Emergency Departments to handle mass casualty, disaster-related circumstances.The existing Trauma and Emergency Department, one story above ground, was accessed only by a set of ramps from outside the building, making access difficult for some patients and challenging for the efficient flow of emergency vehicles. The new facility is located on ground level, providing much better accessibility for patients, first responders and staff.ECMC’s new KeyBank Trauma and Emergency Department will address an important community need by expanding the health care delivery system’s capacity to serve patients that require emergency medical attention, serve as a referral source for other area hospitals to transfer patients that require specialized emergency care (of ECMC’s 2,580 trauma cases in 2019, 762 were transfers from other area hospitals), advance ECMC’s engagement and investment in the City of Buffalo’s Delevan-Grider Corridor, and build on ECMC’s strong partnership with the University at Buffalo Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and the Kaleida Health System.

ECMC Corporation President and CEO Thomas J. Quatroche Jr., PhD, said, “This new KeyBank Trauma and Emergency Department is all about our patients. Our caregivers were directly involved in every detail of the new facility, from its physical location to the care unit color schemes to where power outlets were placed. Our Emergency Department clinicians have always provided national best-in-class care and now they have a national best-in-class facility to match their excellence.

Dr. Michael A. Manka Jr., ECMC Chief of Emergency Medicine stated, “The new KeyBank Trauma and Emergency Department features design elements that allow for greater efficiencies in patient flow and will enable the Department’s medical team to achieve high quality outcomes. The customized layout of the space will better align with physicians’ and staff’s work flow while creating a more patient-oriented space containing larger rooms to accommodate patients’ families and the medical team.

The project has raised nearly $15 million from private philanthropy and received a $10 million award from New York State earlier this year. With several other commitments in progress, the capital campaign is expected to conclude later this year.