By Frank Almendarez, MHSA, Chief Administrative Officer, Yavapai Regional Medical Center

When discussing the details of a major project, people often use the phrase, “getting into the weeds.” To most it means working your way through a task list that leads to your end goal.

In my experience, substantial projects are most successful when they combine that day-to-day groundwork with what I call altitude. Think of it as the view airplane passengers have from the sky as their plane descends for landing. Compare that to the perspective of people on the ground driving their cars or strolling the sidewalks. Each position gives you a different take on the same terrain.

For a complex, long-term project like Yavapai Regional Medical Center’s (YRMC) conversion of the west campus into a state-of-the-art medical and wellness campus, both perspectives are essential. Let’s begin by getting some altitude on YRMC’s project. Our goal is to evolve YRMC West into a state-of-the-art medical and wellness campus that will allow us to serve the community in new and innovative ways.

Discovery and Development
Discussions on how to achieve our goal began several years ago with the “discovery” phase of the project. During this information-gathering stage we:

  • Engaged YRMC’s team – the YRMC Board of Directors, Administrative Council, YRMC staff, community members and other stakeholders – for valuable input that helped shape and refine our vision.
  • Conducted a needs assessment that armed us with critical data to inform our decision making.
  • Scanned the healthcare landscape for similar projects that other providers had pursued.

It was an information-gathering trip to a healthcare organization in the Midwest that crystalized our vision for the project. That organization had created a thriving health and wellness center that met their community’s needs. Our peer-to-peer discussions with their staff and detailed tours of their health center were both enlightening and motivating. It was time to lower the altitude and move closer to the ground.

With the help of our architecture and construction firms, we drew up the details of YRMC’s unique medical and wellness campus.

This is Reality
There are two realities about improvement projects at YRMC. The first reality is that our improvement projects do not interrupt our caregiving mission. The second reality is that we are constantly in the midst of improvement projects in support of our caregiving mission.

For example, the Preventive Medicine (Pendleton Center) and Outpatient Physical Rehabilitation teams in Prescott will continue serving you during the construction of our new health center and the adjacent multi-level parking garage. They’re relocating to a new facility that is currently under construction this fall, which will meet the same standards as the current location. When the new health center opens, we’ll unveil new state-of-the-art Preventive Medicine and Outpatient Physical Rehabilitation facilities.

At any time, there are dozens of construction, renovation and maintenance projects happening at YRMC. These involve several hundred staff members – nursing managers, medical directors and other healthcare providers – offering their expertise. Their input is essential. These are professionals who have many other duties, but they get involved because they understand we depend on them to be the voice of the patient.

The Question on Everyone’s Mind
When will the health center open? It’s too early in the project for a definitive opening date. The best way to stayed informed on our progress is to subscribe to YRMCHealthConnect. We’ll cover topics like parking during construction and the exact date that Preventive Medicine and Outpatient Physical Rehabilitation will move to its temporary facility.

In other words, you’ll get both ground-level and elevated information.