ELDORADO – Ferrell Hospital in Eldorado has been approved by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development for a $869,500 Emergency Rural Healthcare Grant, to help fund modifications to the hospital related to ongoing COVID-19 patient care demands.
This Rural Development investment, part of the Emergency Rural Health Care program, will focus on upgrading 15 rooms to “negative airflow.” According to a release, the special airflow design sends each room’s air directly outside the facility, rather than recirculating the air. Negative air flow rooms are essential in caring for COVID-19 patients, as negative airflow reduces the risk of spreading COVID-19 within the facility.
The grant will pay for the conversion of 10 recently-constructed patient rooms to negative air flow rooms, and upgrade five existing semi-private rooms with the same negative air flow ventilation. The grant funds will also be used to improve and enlarge a staff training room, and update clinic spaces which were not a part of Ferrell Hospital’s recent renovation.
The updates will begin soon, and should be completed by this summer, according to officials. Patient care needs will be prioritized, with maintenance and construction crews working closely with clinical staff for minimal disruption. As the project continues, and specific areas are affected, more updates will be made available.