Sentara Announces $199 Million Expansion of Norfolk General Hospital

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Sentara Norfolk General Hospital is planning a $199 million expansion and update of the hospital.

The expansion, announced Monday, will begin in March and last five years, adding three floors to two wings and expanding and modernizing the emergency department, which includes the region’s only Level 1 trauma center.

The project also will expand and update 18 operating rooms and replace a neonatal intensive care unit.

The beginning phase of the project will be financed through corporate cash reserves, with later work paid for with debt financing, according to Sentara spokesman Dale Gauding.

The 525-bed hospital shares a campus with Eastern Virginia Medical School and Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters. A million-pound crane 200 feet tall with a 300-foot boom will be used for construction.

Sea-level rise has been taken into account since the Sentara health system’s signature hospital is in the low-lying neighborhood of Ghent. The hospital is working with Norfolk’s resiliency initiative on that point. Some of the hospital’s CT scanners and other radiology equipment will be moved to the third floor during construction.

Gauding said all six of the hospital’s emergency generators will be above ground level when the project is complete.

Norfolk General is home base for the Nightingale Regional Air Ambulance, and plans call for a helipad on the roof of the Kaufman wing with a dedicated elevator to the trauma center in the emergency department.

Besides the Level 1 trauma center, which treats the most severe injuries, the hospital also has the area’s only organ transplant program for hearts, kidneys and pancreases.

Norfolk General has a series of connected buildings, ranging from a wing built in the 1950s to Sentara Heart Hospital, which opened in 2006.

According to a Sentara news release, the work is expected to affect traffic flow on the medical campus, which handles up to 18,000 cars, trucks, buses and ambulances a day.

The hospital is one of 12 owned by Sentara Healthcare in Virginia and North Carolina.


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