The $49 million expansion project at the in Grayslake was unveiled Thursday before a large crowd of staff, former patients, local officials, county board members and community leaders.
The expansion took three years to complete, including 7,400 square-feet of renovations and 70,900 square-feet of new construction. Now, the facility offers a new Outpatient Surgery Center, which opened this month, and a Cancer Center, which opened in October 2010.
“It’s easy to get caught up in the operations side of the expansion and all of the technical enhancements that are here, but patient care is what it all boils down to,” said Thomas McAfee, president of Northwestern Lake Forest Hospital. He said the new additions will provide area residents with advanced outpatient and cancer care.
The patient needs were kept first and foremost in the design of the Outpatient Surgery Center and the Cancer Center.
Pam Franscella of Gurnee, a breast cancer survivor who received treatment in Grayslake, praised the nurses and the doctors for all they had done during the grand opening event. “The state of the art care and the compassion of the staff is at such a high level, more than anyone could expect,” she said. “I just cannot say enough good things about them."
McAfee said that patient care and comfort is the reason behind it all.
“To hear a patient speak about the compassion, the care and the convenience of this facility and of having it located here in Grayslake, in the center of the county, that is what matters most," McAfee said.
Dr. Joseph Imperato, medical director of the Radiation Oncology at Northwestern Lake Forest Hospital, said the response to the Cancer Center has been overwhelming.
“The outpouring from the community has been incredible,” he said. “In the six months that we’ve been open, we have running full shifts every day. We are seeing 60 patients per day."
County board members, trustees, Grayslake police and fire officials, patients, doctors and nurses all were among those attending the grand opening event. They were given tours of the four new 500 square-foot operating suites and the Cancer Center.
Check back next week for a detailed look at the Outpatient Surgery Center and the Cancer Center.