By LOIS KINDLE
Southern Hillsborough County growth is exponential, and with it, so is the need for increased access to medical services.
To help meet the burgeoning demand, Manatee Memorial Hospital in Bradenton is building a full-service standalone emergency department at 16504 U.S. 301 S, on the back corner of the property behind the Walmart Supercenter in Wimauma.
Permitting for the building was completed prior to construction being allowed to begin about six weeks ago. Fourteen BLOX manufactured components are already up.
The 10,884-square-foot facility will always be staffed by a physician and provide 24-hour, year-round access and a complete array of X-rays, lab tests, CTs (computerized tomography scans) and ultrasounds, said Tom R. McDougal Jr., Manatee Memorial Hospital CEO since Aug. 23, 2021.
“It’s a department of the hospital that (will function) as a second emergency room,” he said. “Our goal is to see our first patient in April or May (pending any unexpected delays).”
McDougal noted the greater Sun City Center market is important to Manatee Memorial.
“We have a number of physicians with offices in both Bradenton and Sun City Center who have privileges with us and are members of our medical staff,” he said.
McDougal said the new emergency department will, if needed, refer patients to Manatee Memorial Hospital; however, if patients prefer, they can go to South Bay or any other hospital for further care.
“We are ready and capable of caring for their ongoing needs,” he added. “But it’s always the patient’s choice.”
Owned by Universal Health Services, Manatee Memorial Hospital, 206 Second St. E, Bradenton, opened in February 1953 and serves patients living in Manatee County, Sarasota County and southern Hillsborough County.
The medical facility has 319 beds, about 1,800 employees and more than 550 physicians, residents and allied health professionals. Its 48-bed, onsite emergency department sees 200 to 250 patients per day, McDougal said.
Per its website, the hospital’s services include cardiac care and cardiovascular medicine; emergency care for folks of all ages; surgery services, including robotic-assisted surgery with the da Vinci® Surgical System; weight-loss program; orthopedic services; outpatient and inpatient radiology and rehabilitation; respiratory care; oncology; wound care; and many more.
Manatee Memorial also offers Level II neonatal intensive care for babies with special needs and has the only Pediatric Center in Manatee County.
For more information, visit www.manateememorial.com/.