Leaders prepare to move nearly 300 patients after several years of planning

Essentia said the transition will only take one day to complete.
Published: Jul. 20, 2023 at 11:18 AM CDT
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DULUTH, MN. (Northern News Now) - Essentia’s new St. Mary’s Medical Center in Duluth will welcome its patients at the end of the month.

Officials with Essentia said the transition will only take one day to complete.

On Sunday, July 30, nearly 300 patients will be moved from the current legacy St. Mary’s Medical Center to the new building through the skyway system.

Planning with Healthcare Relocation of America consultants for the process took several years, according to officials.

Mia Lundquist and Luke Eastep, Vision Northland advisors, said they have done several mock trainings to make sure this process is seamless and safe for all of the patients.

“Luke and I have had countless meetings with the unit leaders to prepare for this day, whether it’s how the day will look to how to prepare their patients, to all of the safety protocols that have to be in place,” says Lundquist. “We are fortunate we are staffed appropriately so whether they are in legacy or replacement or along the way, we’ll be able to care for our patients.”

The transition team said they have scheduled extra nurses to help with moving day.

Three different departments will be moving patients at the same time starting at 7 a.m.

“We will have a sender nurse at the legacy site, and a receiving nurse at the receiving hospital,” explains Eastep. “If I’m a nurse and I have four patients, my first patient would go and then my second, third and then I would move over with my fourth all while those additional nurses would help with that care and then the majority of our medical equipment is new and will already in the replacement hospital here but we will have some medical equipment go over with the patients.”

To better understand the process, the team traveled to Canada to watch how another hospital handled its patient transition.

Additionally, they stated moving in one day proves to be more streamlined than breaking it up into several days or even weeks.

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