In many towns across the county, seeing a specialist means traveling – sometimes hundreds of miles – away from home. But since a $50 million expansion at Pocono Medical Center, area residents don't have to travel at all for five-star care. One such improvement is the Mattioli Emergency Center‚ one of the busiest stand-alone emergency departments in the state.
Since Monroe County is the second-fastest growing county in Pennsylvania‚ and the area sees an influx of 8 million tourists a year‚ the center was designed for both high volume and expansion‚ with 42 beds and the capacity to treat an expected 70‚000 patients per year. The hospital also boasts the ESSA Heart and Vascular Institute‚ allowing individuals with cardiovascular problems to remain in the hospital‚ rather than be transported to another hospital.
The Patient Safety Initiative‚ which includes the Physician Portal‚ allows doctors to have off-site‚ Web-based access to patient files‚ an electronic medication safety tool that includes point-of-care bar coding to ensure proper dosage‚ medicine and recipient‚ and a paperless medical chart system in the emergency room‚ something few other facilities in the country currently have.
“Only 10 percent of emergency rooms nationwide have the wireless protocols in place that we do to manage our volume‚” says Cathleen Canevari‚ director of public relations and marketing for Pocono Medical Center. “Our patient care volumes are three times the national average for an area this size‚ so we wanted to have the best practices in place.”
A regional medical center has evolved from what began as a small community hospital in 1915‚ with many dramatic changes occurring in the last few years‚ Canevari adds. “It’s an exciting time‚ and we’re really taking it to another level‚” she says.
“We’re strategically keeping up by thinking the whole process through‚ bringing in the right people‚ building the right facilities and buying the right equipment to best serve a growing community.”