Baystate Frankin Medical Center planning construction of new operating rooms

August 06, 2013

DOTmed: Please outline the scope of this project.
As reported in the, Baystate Frankin Medical Center is planning a $22 million to $24 million construction project that would erect a new 23,000-square-foot building with new operating rooms.

The two-story building would include four operating rooms (about 44 percent bigger than current rooms, at a size of 650 square feet each), pre-operation and recovery rooms, a loading dock and potential space for other medical services.

The current operating rooms were built in 1975, a time before surgeries used pieces of complex and sophisticated equipment that today take up a lot of space, said President Chuck Gijanto. He hopes the new building, even during the planning and construction phases, will bring in new surgeons who may otherwise have been put off by the hospital’s 450-square-foot operating rooms.

Hospital officials say the project will replace operating rooms that are nearly 40 years old and far too small to be effective. Representatives from both the local nurses union and the Community Health Care Initiative praised the project as a much-needed step in the right direction toward keeping local medical care in Franklin County.

DOTmed: How will this project help the community you serve?
"It’s really sort of a chicken or egg thing with the doctors. It’s going to be really hard to recruit until we have (new) ORs," said Gijanto.

"Until now, you bring a surgeon through for a site visit and they look at the ORs, and you can just kind of see the reaction to them," he said. "We can start sharing (the construction plan) with physician candidates and that will help us attract more of them as well and retain them."