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New ambulance entrance at Hershey Medical Center provides enhanced patient privacy

The new ambulance entrance to the Hershey Medical Center Emergency Department offers privacy for ambulance and helicopter patients, separating them from walk-in patients and visitors. Part of the Emergency Department expansion project that began in November 2017, the dedicated entrance opened on Aug. 10.

When ambulances approach the Emergency Department, they are now directed to the right into the ambulance arrival area. Patients arriving by car are directed to the left for walk-in drop-off.

“Ambulance patients are often having a significant traumatic event,” said Kain Robbins, director of emergency services operations at Hershey Medical Center. “The separate entrance provides them a direct route to services during a very stressful, upsetting time.”

The new entrance allows ambulance crews to take their patients into the Emergency Department through a separate hallway directly to the clinical area away from the triage and patient waiting area. Patients who require decontamination and infectious disease isolation or the sexual assault treatment room can now be taken to those areas directly from the ambulance entrance, avoiding walk-in patients.

The first phase of the Emergency Department expansion was completed in May 2019. Both phases of construction added a total of four care initiation areas, eight exam bays, eight treatment rooms, a dedicated sexual assault exam area and an expanded decontamination infectious disease isolation area and a results waiting area as well as a new main entrance, registration desk and waiting area.

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