Jackson Hospital in need of voters' help
MIAMI (WSVN) -- A major South Florida hospital is in need of help to improve its facilities, but it's all in the voters' hands to decide.
"As more patients have choices about where they go for hospitals, we know that the appearance of our facilities, the medical equipment that we have, the IT infrastructure, all of that becomes more and more and more important," Matthew Pinzur of Jackson Health System said.
In order to remain competitive and attractive to patients, Jackson Health System officials said they need Miami-Dade voters to vote yes on a bond referendum on a ballot Nov. 5.
It would mean pumping $830 million into the hospital system financed by a property tax hike.
The money would be spent on upgrading technology equipment such as old CT scanners with new ones and replacing infrastructure.
The building is decades old and rusty pipes and corroded insulation in the basement of the Downtown Miami facility need to be replaced.
"This building is from 1952, so some of these systems have been here since 1952 that needs immediate replacements to them," David Clark of the Jackson Health System said.
"Our infrastructure, it is working, but it's outdated, and that's what we need to bring back to, hopefully, the 20th century," Alejandro Contreras of the Jackson Health System said.
Another concern is modernizing patient rooms and facilities. Several patient rooms will undergo renovation with the plan to keep them competitive and to make rooms friendly for patients and their families.
The 25-feet-and-16,000-sqaure-foot 15th floor is currently under construction and undergoing a major renovation. The money used to pay for renovations comes from profits made last year. Several suites have already been renovated and completed. The room is technologically advanced and the hopes are for the rest of the rooms throughout Jackson Health System to replicate the suite.
Chief of neurological surgery Dr. Barth Green said the upgrades to patient rooms are necessary for Jackson to remain a leading hospital. It would also mean faster recovery and quality care for all patients.
If the bond is approved, the decades-old rehabilitation and physical therapy building will be demolished and rebuilt.
"This new rehabilitation center is a partnership between Jackson Health System and University of Miami and Miami Project," Green said. "So we'll not only have the latest clinical treatments but the latest research and technology."
But in order to complete the upgrade, Jackson Health officials said, voters have to vote "yes" for the bond referendum. If they do, officials hope to complete the major renovations within five years.
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