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Scheduled northwest wing closure in the PMC

23 Jun 2019

By: Joshua Walterscheid, MD; Robert Wolf, MD, medical director of psychiatric medicine; and Amie Wittenberg, MSN, RN, director of emergency and psychiatric services

Oregon Administrative Rules dictate certain physical room requirements we must follow to care for inpatient psychiatric patients. This includes specific structural features such as doors, windows, wiring, etc., that are permissible. Construction work is necessary to install new double-doors leading to the Psychiatric Medicine Center’s north hallway in order to meet the standards.

As a result, Salem Health Psychiatric Medicine Center’s north hallway will be closed from June 24 through July 17. This will reduce the number of PMC beds from 24 to 11. During this time, we will follow our interdisciplinary clinical operations plan to mitigate behavioral health patient boarding within the emergency department. Please use regular overflow processes, as appropriate, as we do when we have limited resources or high census.

During construction, we will also complete work for potential ligature risks noted in a citation from the Joint Commission. By conducting this work simultaneously, rather than sequentially, the timeline for all the work is eight weeks shorter. Wherever possible, we have used Lean methodology to help limit process changes during construction.

We have tried to minimize impact to patients and staff by involving affected units and departments in construction planning, risk mitigation and training. However, your flexibility and problem solving will be undoubtedly valuable.

Thank you for working with us during this scheduled construction closure. If you have any questions about construction or the clinical operations plan, please reach out to one of us.