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Kaweah Health Emergency Department Construction Updates

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Starting October 19, the hospital will begin its safety screening of Emergency Department (ED) and Labor and Delivery patients inside of the hospital’s Mineral King Wing (off Mineral King Avenue). The change is in response to the decline in COVID-19 hospitalizations and the decreased rate of COVID-related ED visits. This will also allow the hospital to continue construction on its ED, which is estimated to be complete in Spring 2021.

As a result of this continued construction, beginning in November, the current Emergency Department parking lot entrance on Mineral King Avenue will be closed, and patients will have to use the entrance on Locust Street to enter the Emergency Department parking lot. Detour signage is being placed throughout downtown Visalia.

We apologize for any inconvenience you experience as we work to nearly double the size of our Emergency Department by Spring 2021.

Background

Kaweah Health Medical Center’s Emergency Department (ED) is one of the busiest in California, caring for approximately 90,000 patients each year. The medical center’s ED was originally designed to support the treatment of 72,000 patients a year. But, as the only trauma center between Fresno and Bakersfield, and one of only two emergency departments serving the nearly 500,000 living in Tulare County, Kaweah Health is seeing in excess of 250 patients a day, on a regular basis.

Project Description

When patients seek care in Kaweah Health’s ED, it is important that they receive prompt, efficient and life-saving care. This ED Expansion will modernize, expand and improve Kaweah Health’s ED facilities to help better serve patients and meet the needs of our growing community. This expansion will bring the community:

  • More Space. The number of ED patient beds will nearly double, growing from 41 beds to 74 beds.
  • More Comfort. The waiting area will more than double in size to provide 100+ patients and their families with a larger, more comfortable environment. Currently, the ED waiting area can accommodate approximately 65 people.
  • More Medical Staff. When complete, there will be more medical providers and nurses providing care in the newly expanded ED.
  • More Timely/Efficient Care. Our new fast track area will allow our team to more quickly screen patients, determine the level of their illness or injury, and provide them the precise level of care they need.

Patient/Visitor Impacts

All hospital services will remain open throughout this expansion.

JR Garcia, Emergency Department Tech Supervisor

We're working hard to double the size of our Emergency Department by 2021, but already the expansion has allowed us to open a new area that is helping physicians see patients more quickly, within 30 minutes of their arrival. Our new Physician at Triage area is a separate and enclosed space, with its own TV and seating, where physicians can examine patients and order any labs, x-rays, or other tests needed. Patients stay there for labs, x-rays, or other tests, before heading out to the ED waiting area until results are available to determine the next course of care.


OPTIONS TO HELP YOU PARK

VALET PARKING

Available at our main entrance off Mineral King Avenue (soon to be relocated on Locust St.), it is FREE, fast and convenient. We offer secure parking either adjacent to or within our valet's line of sight.

HOURS: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. weekdays 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekends

CITY PARKING STRUCTURES (WILLOW + ACEQUIA)
Directly across the street from the hospital, each offers all-day parking for patients and hospital visitors.

QUESTIONS? For parking updates, Call (559) 624-2008.

WHAT TO EXPECT.

MINERAL KING PARKING LOT: You will only be able to enter this lot off Mineral King Avenue. Parking will be reduced during construction. The lot will only be open to emergency and labor and delivery patients. There will be a small 20-minute patient drop-off area.

MORE VALET STAFF:

We have increased the number of employees working to provide you with FREE valet parking service.

MORE ALL-DAY PARKING IN ACEQUIA PARKING STRUCTURE: The 2nd floor of this structure is now all-day parking, along with the 4th and 5th floors. Please use crosswalks.

MORE ALL-DAY PARKING IN WILLOW PARKING STRUCTURE: The 2nd floor of the Willow Parking Structure is now all-day parking, along with the 5th floor. Please use crosswalks.

Construction Timeline

Two years (Winter 2017-Summer 2021)

Cost

$32.8 million

Funding

Partial proceeds from the $100 million revenue bonds sold by Kaweah Health in December 2015. Principal and interest will be repaid to bond holders from revenues received by Kaweah Health for providing patient care services.

RESOURCES:

Visitor Parking Brochure (ENGLISH) - To view or print, click HERE.

Folleto de estacionamiento para visitantes (ESPAÑOL) - Seleccione AQUÍ para ver en español.