The Syracuse Community Memorial Hospital Board heard public comments regarding the Emergency Entrance at the proposed new facility.
The Otoe County EMS Personnel submitted a formal letter and responded to questions from board members regarding whether patients, the hospital and staff would be better served by an enclosed drive-thru garage.
Currently, the Leo A. Daly firm, retained to design the new facility, has proposed an Emergency bay enclosed on three sides and covered similar to the bay at CHI St. Mary’s hospital in Nebraska City.
Representatives from Leo A. Daly also submitted alternate plans and cost estimates for the Board members to consider including the drive-thru garage proposed by EMS personnel and a drive-thru entrance with only two walls.   
Both the drive-thru entrance and the original emergency bay would keep the project under budget, an important consideration for board members.
The drive-thru garage, however, might prove an appealing capital project for donors wishing to make a more tangible contribution to the hospital and the community.
No decision was reached regarding the emergency entrance at this meeting.
Board members also got a first look at the floor ing, carpeting, paint and external materials being proposed for the new facility.
Emphasis is being placed on durability, functionality and ease of repair. Several samples were available for the Board members to see and touch.
Color selections with continue to be fine tuned as designers meet with staff members to gain better understanding of the needs and functions of different areas of the hospital.
The design and construction of the new hospital is being made possible through a $27 Million low-interest loan from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The loan is expected to close in mid-December.

CMH buys land for hospital in Syracuse
Community Memorial Hospital (CMH) has purchased land for its future replacement hospital and clinic in Syracuse.
The approximately 28-acre site, to the northwest of the Highways 50 and 2 intersections, south of the John Deere dealer, offers high visibility for the hospital, easier access from outlying areas, and provides room to grow in the future.
CMH’s current site is approximately four acres. A residential neighborhood has grown around the site, leaving no land for facility expansion or additional parking.
“This is an important and fundamental step forward to ensure this project becomes a reality for our residents,” said Fred Bredehoeft, President of the CMH District Board of Directors. “We believe this location will provide greater accessibility to people throughout the region, and will allow the hospital the ability to expand over time.”
According to Michael Harvey, CMH President CEO, grading on the site could begin as early as next month to prepare the land for construction next spring.