SCRANTON -- One of the biggest health care providers in our area has announced a major investment to connect two hospitals.
Commonwealth Health announced Wednesday morning that it is investing $80 million to connect Regional Hospital of Scranton with Moses Taylor Hospital.
A city block made up of mostly vacant space is all that separates two of Scranton's three hospitals -- Regional Hospital of Scranton and Moses Taylor Hospital.
"We're trying to create a comprehensive health network for the city of Scranton, and really doing that separately, separated by a block of the city just doesn't make sense," said CEO Justin Davis.
Commonwealth Health's CEO rolled out a plan in front of both hospitals' staff to connect Regional and Moses Taylor with a sky bridge and better unite hospital services.
While the larger emergency room, surgical units, and ICU will be at Regional, Moses Taylor will house three specialty hospitals, for women, children, and orthopedic patients.
"Women's and children's services has been a focus at Moses Taylor Hospital for the past decade. We want to create a specialty hospital around that service line. Orthopedics has grown dramatically on both campuses. We want to bring those two dynamic programs together," Davis explained.
The oldest building at Regional Hospital on the corner of Jefferson Avenue and East Gibson Street will be torn down to make way for the brand new main entrance.
Of all the improvements, one, in particular, got a reaction from hospital staff.
"Every one of our patient rooms will be private," Davis announced to applause from staff members.
Rooms will be added or renovated in both Moses and Regional.
"We've been wanting private rooms forever," said Mary Jeanne Riviello, R.N. "It's better for the patient, more privacy, there's more room to work with equipment, the patients feel safer, they can have family in the room with them."
Some of the work is already going on right now, but officials with Commonwealth Health expect to open the new united hospital in 2020.