Officials and employees from Sentara Healthcare braved the elements to host a "Topping Out Ceremony "for the five story, approximately 340,000 square foot Sentara Williamsburg Regional Medical Center today.
The 'topping out ceremony' is a traditional event held by construction crews once the steel frame of a new building is up. One of the final uppermost beams was signed by Sentara employees and was raised into place by a work crew from McCarthy Construction during the event.
Attached to the beam, as it was lifted into place, was an American flag, to symbolize patriotism; the traditional topping out evergreen tree, which came from the site and signifies the life and growth of the building; and a computer monitor, to symbolize the technical capabilities of this new facility.
Upon completion in the Summer of 2006, Sentara Williamsburg Regional Medical Center will feature 139 all private rooms. Not only will the new hospital provide better access, flow, privacy and availability of services, it also provides a major opportunity to add to the high level of care already provided by local medical professionals and the specialists who staff the hospital.
"Topping out is an important tradition among construction projects, celebrated only when a building has reached its highest point," said Robert Graves, Administrator of SWCH. "How appropriate to our goals and the work of Sentara Williamsburg Regional Medical Center taking patient care and the future health of this community to its highest level."
Sentara Williamsburg Regional Medical Center will be the only Planetree hospital on the Virginia peninsula. The facility will feature a 30-bed Emergency Department with 10 observation beds, a total of 8 Operating Rooms and 22 private prep and recovery rooms.
The amenities available at the new Sentara Williamsburg Regional Medical Center will be supported by fully integrated systems. Some of the other features at the new hospital include a filmless, all-digital radiology department; expanded cardiac and vascular services, with a full time, dedicated cardiac cath lab and a separate dedicated special procedures room for interventional radiology and vascular procedures; a critical care and progressive care unit; and a wide variety of outpatient services.
"The final beam was signed by so many Sentara Williamsburg Community Hospital employees who wanted to have a hand in history," Graves added. "With the raising of this beam, Im proud to say that we have now become an important part of the future a future of outstanding healthcare delivery."