Has approval from the State been granted for this project?
The Green Mountain Care Board has provided required approval for our two Certificates of Need. We continue to move through Vermont’s permitting process and hope to have completed that effort in early May.
When is construction going to begin and end?
We are on track for construction to start in the Spring of 2016 and expect to be completed by the end of 2017 or early 2018.
Will the project be phased and if so what area will be impacted first?
The first phase of the project will involve the construction and renovation relating to our conversion to all private inpatient rooms. Once that is underway, we will begin work on centralized registration in the new lobby, the expanded medical specialty clinic space, and the new medical office building.
Will this project increase costs?
The master facility plan was designed with cost savings and flexibility in mind. Careful planning and saving for the last decade, favorable bond rates and philanthropy will all help to ensure that rates are not impacted by this project. NMC has a strong record of lower than average charges, has the lowest cumulative rate increase among all Vermont’s not-for-profit hospitals over the past 13 years, and implemented an 8% rate DECREASE in Fiscal Year 2016.
Do I need to pay more for a private patient room?
No, room charges are based on the care needs of the patient.
Are the Board, Leadership, Staff, and Medical Staff supporting this project with their own philanthropy?
Absolutely! Over $350,000 has been pledged to this capital campaign from our medical staff, employees, volunteers, management, senior leadership team and board of directors.
Is UVM Medical Center taking over NMC?
NMC has a strong collaborative relationship with UVM Medical Center. We belong to the same Accountable Care organizations and partner with UVM Medical Center on programs such as Cardiology and Urology. We have ongoing conversations with UVM Medical Center, other Vermont hospitals, and other area providers on how else we can work together more efficiently and effectively. However, we remain independent organizations.
What Will Be In the Medical Office Building?
This new attached Medical Office Building will bring primary care, urgent care, and orthopaedics into efficient new space at the front of our campus. Increased access to primary care and urgent care is key in lowering overall costs for patients and the State by reducing avoidable emergency room visits. These practices are also key to meeting the growing needs for care in our community given our aging demographic. The shelled second floor of the Medical Office building provides efficient, affordable expansion space to help meeting future needs in our community.
Given NMC’s prudent planning and financial position why is a capital campaign necessary?
NMC hopes to raise roughly 10% of the entire project cost through community investment. Early on, the Green Mountain Care Board applauded this approach and noted our early success as favorable to our application. This is a unique time for our community to demonstrate their support of local health care by contributing to the project, which frees up funding to support medical services which are not sustainable on their own as well as prevention efforts such as Rise VT, which can ultimately help to reduce overall healthcare costs through improved population health.
Why are you reducing the number of impatient beds?
NMC is technically licensed for 70 beds. To meet historic and current community need, we have had fewer than that in actual service. We have done a significant review of the need for inpatient beds for our Medical Surgical and Intensive Care patients both now and in the future. The efficiency of private rooms (removing questions of which patients can have which roommates) enables us to reduce bed counts slightly while actually having more predictable bed availability. This project will result in a combined Medical/Surgical and Intensive Care Unit of 34 beds, all in private rooms.
How does this project benefit our patients and community?
This project aligns NMC with the future of healthcare. It enhances our inpatient healing environment, improves access to outpatient services, and increases flexibility and efficiency in support of our efforts to remove avoidable costs from the system. Ultimately, this project allows exceptional care to continue to be delivered in our local community – preserving access to care, more than 850 jobs, and economic stability.
Will parking be impacted?
There will be changes in parking during construction. There will be some temporary reductions in parking space count, but those levels never get significantly below what we had prior to our recent parking expansion. A portion of employee parking will shift to a new parking lot near Northwestern Counseling & Support Services. Patient and visitor parking will shift temporarily to the Conference Center parking lot. We will also be encouraging and incentivizing our employees to find healthy alternatives to parking off campus to help preserve access for patients and visitors.