Since May 20, 1960 through June 30, 2007, over 66,000 patients have been admitted to Hamilton Memorial Hospital. A number equal to over seven times the county’s population. In addition, over 407,174 outpatient visits have been made over the same period.
The first Nursing Home Resident was admitted on May 25, 1970. Ten years and five days after the first Hospital Patient was admitted. Again, work began long before this date. The Ordinance calling for the construction of the Nursing Home was passed on May 21, 1968 or two years prior to having the Nursing Center ready for its first resident. Residents admitted on the first day were: Lawrence Aydt, Mary Frazier, Sarah Mead, Harry Taylor and George Auxier. Through the present the facility has been a second home to many area residents.
The next major project undertaken by the Hospital District was the construction of additional patient rooms. The Hospital was originally constructed with 32 patient beds plus an obstetrics and nursery area. With the help of a bequest left by Gus E. Ledbetter, an additional 16 beds were constructed as a South Wing of the Hospital, increasing the Hospital’s capacity to 48 beds. This construction was completed in 1972.
In 1978 a new service, in addition to the acute care services provided in the Hospital and the intermediate care provided at the nursing center was added. With the assistance of a Federal Grant, a Home Health Agency was established. The Home Health Agency’s staff travels throughout the area delivering healthcare services to residents in their homes. Services provided include various types of skilled registered nurse activities, home health aide visits and physical therapy.
The Emergency Room Addition to the south portion of the Hospital was the next project undertaken by the Hospital District. The present Emergency Room was located at the North end of the Hospital where the Nursing Center adjoins to the Hospital and consisted of a single room. Plans for the new Emergency Room called for three examination areas, a waiting room, a suture and laceration room, and a casting room. The new emergency room also featured a canopy for convenient loading and unloading of patients who arrive by ambulance. In addition, this project, included modifications to the surgical suite. This addition was completed in 1979.
1983 marked the beginning of a new construction project. Up until this time additions had been made to increase the size of the bed capacity and the Emergency Room, but no additions had been made to provide space for new ancillary services. The 1983 addition provided space for Physical Therapy and Respiratory Therapy services that had been added since the original construction. In addition, a new Recovery Room was constructed adjacent to the Surgery Suites to provide for better after surgery monitoring of patients.