Hickman Hospital on track to open in August


Construction of ProMedica’s newest hospital on M-52. Photo by Jim Lincoln.

“A lot has changed since August,” said Dr. Julie Yaroch, president of ProMedica Bixby and Herrick Hospitals, referring to construction of the new ProMedica Charles and Virginia Hickman Hospital, which began with a groundbreaking in June 2017. The 220,000-square-foot campus on M-52 is centrally located to provide access for residents in Lenawee County and surrounding communities and will replace Tecumseh’s Herrick Hospital and Adrian’s Bixby Hospital.

The new 205,000-square-foot hospital will hold 58 acute care beds, four operating rooms, three minor procedure rooms, a cardiac rehabilitation unit and sleep clinic, intensive care and a step-down unit, outpatient cardiovascular, pulmonary and neurology clinics, diagnostic imaging services, and more. It is about 75% complete.

On the second and third floors the countertops are installed in the operating rooms and painting and flooring have been finished. Two medical/surgical units, critical care and labor and delivery are being painted, with countertops and cabinetry going in. “A lot of the finishing touches are already occurring on our second and third floors,” Yaroch said. “The last floor to get completed is our first floor, because that is the floor that gets the majority of the traffic when you’re under construction for all of the floors above that.”

Drywall is up in the emergency and radiology departments on the first floor. The cafeteria, unlike the basement cafeterias in Herrick and Bixby hospitals, will be above ground with glass, stone columns, and seating both indoors and out.

Yaroch said some changes are being made for some of the rooftops. “Because of the different levels of our hospital, some of our main windows look out on to rooftops. It’s not the most attractive to look at a black rooftop, so we are going to do some green rooftops in some locations,” she said. A hallway on the second floor with a waiting and break area will look out onto a rooftop where succulents will be planted to soften up the appearance. The same treatment will occur on other rooftops viewable from second-story patient rooms.

One of the rooftops viewable from the third story, while not conducive to plantings, will have an artistic rendering of a river running through a landscape, created with colored stone and glass.

Finishing touches on the hospital include picking out furniture and artwork for the donor wall, which will give thanks to all who have contributed throughout the years as well as those who helped fund the new campus.

The construction project is on target to be completed in June, and Yaroch said there have been organizational meetings to discuss how patients will be moved on August 27, the target date for transitioning to the new building, how operations will change for frontline staff and making sure they will have the education they need before the hospital opens.

The health and wellness building, which will house the Lenawee County YMCA as well as physical therapy and other services, is about 30% complete and is set to be finished in July with a hoped-for opening date sometime in August.  

Yaroch said that if patients have concerns about where to go for their care when the hospital’s opening date nears, they may call the switchboard at Bixby Hospital at 265.0292 for further information. ProMedica will continue to share updates on the process as the date for opening gets nearer.

Funding for the new hospital has been on track, with the goal well within sight. “We’re on the last million dollars of this campaign, so we’re close to finishing. It was an $18 million campaign and we are somewhere around the $17 million mark,” she said.

“We’ve been talking about this project for years. I’ve been in Lenawee County since ’99 and I’ve heard about this for probably 10 years. We’d get forward momentum and then we would have to halt for changes in healthcare climate and then we’d move forward again,” said Yaroch. “It’s really exciting to be at this point. There’s a lot of moving pieces and we have a really dedicated team that shares in the excitement and also the commitment to make sure that moving from two existing facilities into the new one will be as seamless as possible.

“It’s been worth the wait. When those doors open up, I hope the community will share in our excitement and our joy,” she said.


Tecumseh Herald


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