News Release

Media Contact:
Christina Chavira
Communications Specialist
530.332.5589 office; 530.588.4411 cell

Enloe Medical Center to open Magnolia Tower this week

Main and Emergency Room Entrances to move Thursday, Nov. 15

CHICO, Calif., Nov. 14, 2012 – Enloe Medical Center opens the doors of its new Magnolia Tower starting Thursday, Nov. 15, when a three-day sequence of patient moves will begin. Over the past month, excitement has been building at the medical center. This week Enloe received the official and final approvals needed to move into the space. On Tuesday, the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OSHPD) awarded Enloe a Certificate of Occupancy. On Wednesday, the California Department of Public Health awarded Enloe a license to use the space.

The Magnolia Tower is the new 191,000 square-foot-addition that doubles the size of the medical center. It has five stories providing patient care as well as a basement with equipment. The new tower is the first expansion of the hospital since 1980.

“We all look forward to providing private patient rooms and ample space in a beautiful and quiet environment with new leading-edge equipment,” said Mike Wiltermood, President and CEO. “We are grateful to everyone who has been involved with preparations to occupy the space.

“It was a complex and involved process to get the new patient tower to completion. The Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development, as well as the local California Department of Public Health office could not have been more supportive in getting us ready,” Wiltermood added.

Along with the new tower opening, a block of Magnolia Avenue will re-open, connecting 5th and 6th Avenues in front of the medical center. The hospital’s two new entrances – the Main Entrance and the North Entrance -- face this newly opened section of Magnolia Avenue.

All patients will enter through the new Main Entrance on Magnolia near W. 5th Avenue, starting Nov. 15 at 5:30 a.m. The former main entrance will close permanently on the evening of Wednesday, Nov. 14 at 9:30 p.m., when that entrance normally closes each night.

The Main and North entrances each have a covered patient drop-off  lane. Free valet service will be available at the new Main Entrance from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., seven days a week, including holidays. Additional medical center parking spots are located in front of the Magnolia tower.

The first areas of the hospital to move will be the Admitting department as well as the gift shop, both located in the new main lobby. Patient moves are set to begin on Thursday morning and continue through Saturday. The move will provide patients with their own private rooms. Not all patients will move to the new tower; some will remain in the existing 5th Avenue Tower. All patients will receive a letter informing them about a possible move, and a patient care team is in place to carry out the transfer of each patient.

The new tower is part of the Enloe Century Project expansion, aimed at meeting the area’s growing community as well as the state's seismic requirements. For hospitals like Enloe Medical Center, the state has set a deadline of Dec. 31, 2012 for hospitals to rebuild or retrofit their facilities to meet strict seismic standards.

The next phase of the Century Project is the Emergency Room expansion, which is set to begin this week. On Thursday (Nov. 15) at 7:30 a.m., the entrance to the Emergency Room will be relocated to the new Main Entrance and preparation for construction will begin.

The Century Project consists of the Magnolia Tower, an expanded Emergency Room, a parking structure on W. 6th Avenue and a park. Enloe's new parking structure, opened in 2008, with 742 spaces. Along with the expansion project, the existing 5th Avenue Tower will also undergo renovations to match the interiors of the new patient tower.

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Enloe Medical Center is a local, nonprofit health care organization. For more information, please call 530/332-7300 or visit us online at Enloe Medical Center is located at 1531 Esplanade Chico, Calif.  95926.

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