ONTARIO – March 1, 2017 – After multiple phases of development, Avita has opened Ontario Hospital which offers North Central Ohio residents a 24-hour, full-service Emergency Department, inpatient care, surgical care, and a wide variety of specialty service lines. Ontario Hospital is the third hospital for Avita Health System who is also the parent company for both Galion and Bucyrus Hospitals. Ontario Hospital is expected to bring over 300 new, full-time jobs to the city.
This latest phase of Avita’s Ontario project included extensive construction on all three floors of the former Lazarus retail building; two floors opened February 6. “The most crucial service line added on the ground level is our Emergency Department,” comments Jerry Morasko, President and CEO of Avita Health System. “Our full-service ER has 23 beds and patients will benefit because they will be surrounded by supporting service lines such as inpatient care, surgery, radiology, and lab.” Every room in the Emergency Department is private with sliding glass doors which help with the noise and privacy concerns of patients.
Adjacent to the hospital’s Emergency Department is an ambulance entrance and helipad which will serve critical incoming and outgoing patients.
The entire third floor of Ontario Hospital is complete and includes a 7-bed intensive care unit, a 19-bed inpatient wing, a 16-bed pre/post op area, 4 surgical suites, and a café/kitchen. Inpatient rooms were designed to be very spacious to allow hospital staff extra room to work as well as family members room to visit. The comfortable atmosphere includes a large-flat screen tv, walk-in shower, and large sliding glass door which helps deter noise from outside of the room. ICU rooms include a full-size pull-out sofa which encourages family members to accompany patients overnight which helps in the healing process.
An advanced call-system is also in each patient room which helps notify the nurse of specific needs the patient may have. A second unit is mounted to the wall allowing visitors an easy way to ask for pain control, bathroom assistance, or more water.
A few service lines are still under construction at the new hospital which include a cardiac catheterization lab and cardiac rehab area. Hospital officials say these areas are expected to open this year.
Despite Avita’s tremendous growth over the past few years, the health system will remain locally governed. “It is crucial that our board members are local residents of Crawford and Richland County,” comments Morasko. “We can better serve the community if the direction of our health system is led by local community residents because they are the individuals who live in our market area and utilize the services.”
History: Avita announced their purchase of the former Lazarus retail anchor store in October 2013 at the Richland Mall. Lazarus (also known as the sleeping giant) sat empty for 7 years after closing in 2006. This 17-acre property was turned into a state-of-the-art multi-specialty medical facility by December 2014 after an aggressive demolition and construction timeline. The decision to grow in to the Ontario area was fueled by the fact that Richland County is a healthcare shortage area and a large-scale medical facility would be ideal to help fill this void by attracting medical professionals to the area. Avita officials examined several areas of land in Richland County prior to the purchase of the Lazarus building. The mall location was chosen based on the convenient location and solid foundation.
About Avita Health System: Avita is a healthcare system comprised of 3 hospitals (Ontario Hospital, Galion Hospital, and Bucyrus Hospital) and over 40 supporting medical clinics. Over 1,600 employees serve Avita and provide quality healthcare to Richland, Crawford, and surrounding Ohio counties. In recent years, Avita has made tremendous strides in patient satisfaction, ranking them in the top 10% nationally in customer service.