Memorial Hospital Dedicates Expansion Projects

Memorial Hospital at Gulfport dedicated a nearly $6 million expansion project Thursday. It includes a new 16 bed intensive care unit and a much larger radiology department. The improvements will help the hospital meet the future medical needs of a growing coast community.

Memorial Hospital's chief executive officer says the improvements have been in the works for several years.

"Memorial embarked on an extensive expansion and renovation plan a number of years ago. And now we're beginning to see those projects finish," CEO Jim Kaigler said.

A new intensive care unit is among the hospital improvements. Visitors toured the new area, which includes 16 beds along with the latest medical technology. A high tech video system assists with patient monitoring.

"By having this monitoring system in place, we're actually able to see every patient continuously," ICU Manager Patricia Fuller said.

A bank of medical monitors helps the central nurses station keep track of each patient's vital signs. Patient beds also feature the latest innovations.  Adding beds to the ICU unit helps Memorial address a growing concern.

"We just did not have enough intensive care unit beds. And as a result of that, patients would back up in the hospital, particularly in the emergency department. With these additional beds, that will help us in that respect," Kaigler said.

The hospital's radiology department is also larger. And it has a new name: Diagnostic Imaging Services.

"We've increased the number of CT scanners. We've increased ultra sound. Our square footage has increased, waiting space for our patients. The whole imaging operation has dramatically improved," Diagnostic Imaging Director Mike West said.

All the improvements are designed to keep pace with a growing coast.

"We're in a growing area. Memorial has been here for well over 50 years. We've served the needs of the people of Harrison County. And as the population continues to grow, Memorial grows," said Kaigler.