EMHS now open

EMHS CEO Rex Catlin, State Sen. Gene Yaw and Leatherstocking CEO Michael German check out the new natural gas fueled cooking range at the new hospital facility. STAFF PHOTO/STACI WILSON

EMHS CEO Rex Catlin, State Sen. Gene Yaw and Leatherstocking CEO Michael German check out the new natural gas fueled cooking range at the new hospital facility. STAFF PHOTO/STACI WILSON

BY STACI WILSON

Endless Mountains Health Systems opened the doors of its new facility to patients on Monday.

The EMHS staff began moving into the new hospital and physicians’ clinic last week – getting the last minute details in order to begin accepting patients to the 89,000 sq. ft. facility on Monday.

After facing last minute delays near the end of construction, Endless Mountains Health Systems, in Bridgewater Twp., wasn’t able to open its doors by their intended date in mid-November.

On a tour of the facility Thursday morning, EMHS CEO Rex Catlin said employees were in the process of setting up work spaces and preparing for Monday’s final move.

Catlin said emergency rooms at the old and new facility would both be open. The ER at the Grow Avenue location remained open until the last patient is out of the old building. The Montrose Minute Men ambulance company parked outside the closed facility’s emergency room for 24 hours following the move.

EMHS CEO Rex Catlin, Director of Nursing Mary Mushala and Dr. J. Enrique Nazar discuss challenges of rural healthcare and the advantages the new facility will bring to the area with State Sen. Gene Yaw. STAFF PHOTO/STACI WILSON

EMHS CEO Rex Catlin, Director of Nursing Mary Mushala and Dr. J. Enrique Nazar discuss challenges of rural healthcare and the advantages the new facility will bring to the area with State Sen. Gene Yaw. STAFF PHOTO/STACI WILSON

Catlin explained the logistics of the move during the tour with State Sen. Gene Yaw and members of his staff, as well as Barry Denk, Director at The Center for Rural Pennsylvania; and representatives from Leatherstocking Gas Company.

Catlin also told the group that the health care facility is adding several specialized physicians who have come to EMHS “because of the new facility.”
Yaw had asked about problems faced in the recruitment of doctors at a rural hospital.

Catlin said that used to be the case at EMHS but is no longer. “We’re getting calls daily,” he said.

A rheumatologist now sees patients at EMHS, and a gynecologist and nephrologist are expected to also begin practicing at the facility. A plastic surgeon has also expressed interest in coming to the facility.
Catlin said the new facility as been key to being able to add new specialists for area patients.

Of the state’s 13 critical access hospitals, the state senator said four of those are in Yaw’s district. Critical access hospitals improve health care delivery in rural areas of the state.

And while Catlin said the EMHS employees and staff did a great job utilizing the limited space of the old facility, the new building gives an outward appearance of the quality care available at EMHS.

Dr. J. Enrique Nazar was more blunt in his comparison. “That was a nightmare. This is a dream,” he said.

Excepting an asphalt plant in western Susquehanna County, the new EMHS was Leatherstocking Gas Company’s first customer hookup in the area.

Leatherstocking CEO Michael German said, “We’re pleased to be a contributor to this project. Everything here is state-of-the-art. It’s a beautiful facility.”