Maxwell Blum Emergency Pavilion Opens Doors


Maxwell Blum Emergency Pavilion to Open to Patients on January 17, 2007

NEWTON, Mass. (January, 2007)  – After years of research and planning, residents of the western suburbs will finally have a new place to go in an emergency. To address the growing needs of the western suburbs and the rise in emergency room use, the Maxwell Blum Emergency Pavilion will open to patients on January 17, 2007. The $80 million project also includes additional parking and two floors above the Emergency Pavilion for future clinical space. It is the largest expansion project in Newton-Wellesley Hospital’s 125-year history.

The new Emergency Department, named in memory of Maxwell Blum of Newton, will be a vital asset to the community and surrounding region as annual visits to the Newton-Wellesley Hospital Emergency Department have climbed from 35,000 in 1999 to a projected 55,000 visits by 2008.

“This is an historic time for Newton-Wellesley Hospital,” said Michael Jellinek, MD, President of Newton-Wellesley Hospital. “We think our new emergency department will be one of the most comprehensive facilities in the state, and possibly the entire country.”

To accommodate the increased volume, Newton-Wellesley Hospital designed a facility that anticipates the expected growth. The new structure, which includes 36 treatment bays in 35,000 square feet of space with both adult and pediatric trauma rooms, is three times the size of the old department. Since the original Emergency Department was constructed in the 1950s, there were many areas that needed updating to offer patients the quickest, quality care possible using the latest technology available. The new Department also contains a separate eight-bed pediatric emergency area staffed by fellowship-trained pediatric emergency specialists. 

To rapidly treat patients with less severe illnesses and injuries, the Department houses a Fast Track area staffed by board certified emergency medicine physicians and emergency nurses. The goal of this designated area is to treat the majority of patients and get them started on the road to recovery as well as on the road home within 90 minutes of arrival.

“The new Emergency Department was designed with a focus on patient-centered care,” said Mark Lemons, MD, Chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine. “We worked to provide patients with the most comfortable environment for quality treatment including everything from televisions in each room to mobile equipment to minimize patient transfers to various departments during their visit.”

Each treatment room in the Blum Emergency Pavilion is equipped with the latest cardiac and vital sign monitoring technology and computer workstations containing the newest version of emergency department documentation software. This allows caregivers to maintain electronic patient records without having to leave

the patient’s bedside. This paperless documentation system virtually eliminates the need for written charts, reduces error and provides a smoother transition for patients during their Emergency Department experience. The electronic medical records provide physicians outside Newton-Wellesley Hospital with the software to have access to their patient’s records.

“The design of the Department caters to patient comfort,” said Dr. Lemons. “We are also more interested in the experience being a shared process for the patient and their family. In the past, family members would have to stay in the waiting rooms, but now they are able to witness the efforts and hear the recommendations made by the medical team. This is true for critical care as well.”

To provide critical diagnostic information in a shorter amount of time, the new Emergency Department is outfitted with its own Radiology Imaging Suite, which includes two digital X-Ray rooms and a 64-slice CT scanner as well as an adjacent specialized OB/GYN room with ultrasound scanning capabilities.

“We want to give our patients the best and most efficient service possible,” said Dr. Lemons. “By housing diagnostic testing equipment within the emergency department, it creates a more seamless visit for patients.”

Patients arriving at the Maxwell Blum Emergency Pavilion will find many more conveniences and elements to better protect their privacy such as a private rooms and a more secluded triage area used to assess their condition and determine the steps for appropriate care.

“In the new Emergency Department, the Registration Team will go to each patient at the bedside and gather their personal health information instead of using a window in a large waiting area,” said Rob Swann, RN, Nurse Manager, Department of Emergency Medicine. “With the computerized documentation system there is less paper and therefore, less access to patient information.”

Another feature of the new Emergency Department, in direct response to the recent focus on emergency preparedness, is the designated isolation zone. This zone can be immediately turned into a negative pressure area, which filters the contaminants out of the air and prevents them from entering other areas. Many hospitals now feature mobile decontamination units; however, this is actually a planned, built-in decontamination segment of the Maxwell Blum Emergency Pavilion. This integrated area will eliminate the delay caused by having to set up a mobile unit – allowing for quicker treatment of patients who may have been exposed to hazardous materials.

“We are expecting many new advances in technology over the upcoming years,” said Dr. Lemons. “Diagnostic testing is becoming more and more efficient. We hope to provide our patients with high-quality care as the transition of patient care between Emergency Departments, primary care physicians and specialists becomes even more seamless through the use of technology. It is a motivating and challenging time for all medical professionals in the field.”

The Blum Emergency Pavilion is located on the rear campus and can be accessed by entering the Hospital’s East Entrance and proceeding straight up the hill to your right.

For more information about the Maxwell Blum Emergency Pavilion at Newton-Wellesley Hospital, contact CareFinder at 617-243-6566 or visit

Rachel Kagno
Public Affairs & Marketing
Newton-Wellesley Hospital

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