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Summit County’s Premier Emergency Department Opens for Patients January 19

Date: 01.09.2012
Contact: Jennifer Farquhar Phone: (330) 375-4930

Media AlertAKRON, Jan. 6, 2012 – The expansive floor plan, the unique, partially-enclosed ambulance bay and the state-of-the art technology installed in the new Summa Akron City Hospital Emergency Department is all there for one reason: to save lives.

When Phase I of the project opens for patients on January 19 after 22 months under construction, the Emergency Department will be one of the region’s largest and most advanced.

“We have designed the new Emergency Department so that everything our patients need can be done efficiently, with compassion and with the latest technology,” said Michelle Blanda, M.D., FACEP, chair of Emergency Medicine and Trauma Services for Summa Health System. “We’ll also continue our commitment to lifesaving speed and quality.”

Fact SheetThe Emergency Department’s physician, nursing and paramedic workstations are designed to facilitate teamwork and a paperless workflow. The digital marquees and patient tracker boards, computers on wheels and wireless voice communicators will allow staff to see and hear what they need at the push of a button so they can spend more time giving care at the bedside. Via ongoing communication with ambulance squads in the community, the Emergency Department will work to have equipment and personnel waiting to provide immediate care to the patient as he or she arrives, which is the practice today.

Summa Akron City Hospital is a Level I Trauma Center, a Certified Chest Pain Center and a Certified Stroke Center. As the tertiary center for all Summa facilities, Summa Akron City Hospital accepts patient transfers throughout the region via ground and air transport. More than 1,300 ambulance squads arrive to the Emergency Department in a single month. Patient drive-up access for the Emergency Department is via N. Forge St.

In 2011, the Emergency Department’s 162 nurses and paramedics, 46 physicians and 30 resident doctors treated nearly 79,000 patients or about 216 patients per day. Generally, about 60 patients each day are admitted to Summa Akron City Hospital for overnight care. The current Emergency Department was designed to treat just 52,000 patients per year, and Summa Akron City Hospital is anticipating providing emergency care to for more than 82,000 people in 2012.

Phase I of the project consists of the Emergency Department expansion, and Phase II involves remodeling the original space, which will be complete in June. Phase I adds 44 patient rooms, 10 triage rooms and 85,000 square feet. When Phase II opens, another 32 beds and 21,000 square feet will be available for patient care. Phase II will also include a geriatric Emergency Department designed specifically for the needs of Northeast Ohio’s seniors. The original Emergency Department was build for just 43 beds across 19,000 square feet.

The project is part of a $96 million plan announced in March 2010 to grow Summa’s comprehensive emergency network. Summa opened its first free-standing Emergency Department adjacent to the Summa Health Center at Lake Medina in December and is currently building a free-standing Emergency Department that will open near the Summa Health Center at Green later this year. As part of the plan, the Emergency Department at Summa Barberton Hospital is currently being renovated, and renovations Summa Wadsworth Rittman-Hospital’s Emergency Department finished in summer 2011. Summa’s emergency network also consists of Emergency Departments at Summa Western Reserve and Summa St. Thomas Hospitals and Robinson Memorial Hospital, an affiliate of Summa Health System.

In 2011, Summa Akron City Hospital announced a new measure of severe heart attack care in concert with local first responders called “EMS to Balloon Time” or E2B. This tracks the speed at which a patient with a STEMI heart attack can be transported from his or her first medical contact to the hospital’s cardiac cath lab where the patient’s blockage is opened and he or she may receive a lifesaving stent. The national recommendation is to offer E2B in 90 minutes, and Summa Akron City Hospital and local EMS are currently providing this care in an average of 75 minutes. The average time from the hospital doors to the cardiac cath lab is a rapid 49 minutes.

Summa Akron City ERPhoto caption:
One of 44 brand new treatment rooms is ready for patients when Phase I of the new Emergency Department at Summa Akron City Hospital opens on Jan. 19. Physicians and staff care for about 216 emergency patients every day in the current facility, and the hospital is a Level I Trauma Center, Certified Chest Pain Center and Certified Stroke Center. When complete, the Emergency Department will include 76 beds and 10 triage rooms and cover 106,000 square feet.  
Download: High Resolution Image

First PatientPhoto Caption:
Thomas Trautman, 70, of Kent, receives a blood oxygen check from Tammie Phillips, R.N., BSN, at the new Summa Akron City Hospital Emergency Department. Trautman, who was concerned about low blood pressure, was among the first patients to be treated in the new facility, which is expected to provide emergency care to more than 82,000 people in 2012.
Download: High Resolution Image 


About Summa Health System
Summa Health System is one of the largest integrated healthcare delivery systems in Ohio. Encompassing a network of hospitals, community health centers, a health plan, a physician-hospital organization, a multi-specialty physician organization, research and multiple foundations, Summa is nationally renowned for excellence in patient care and for exceptional approaches to healthcare delivery. Summa's clinical services are consistently recognized by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (Magnet® status), U.S. News and World Report, Thomson Reuters and The Leapfrog Group. Summa also is a founding partner of the Austen BioInnovation Institute in Akron. For more information, visit or find us on Facebook at and Twitter at