By Lani Hansen, Senior Reporter
OKMULGEE, Oklahoma– Muscogee (Creek) Nation Department of Health began working on projects to upgrade health facilities to patients satisfaction.
“The Department of Health has done well financially in the last couple of years and we’re starting to build some reserves,” Secretary of Health Shawn Terry said. “So when it comes to entering in our facilities we always want our patients to be proud of where they’re coming.”
There are about 20 projects going on for the MCN health facilities. These projects include expansions, renovations, upgrades and painting projects.
The Koweta pharmacy refill center will be adding on space to the building. The reason they wanted to add on is due to the high volume of pharmaceuticals being shipped from the refill center a shipping space is needs.
“The pharmacy refill center came about, after we opened the refill center we were expecting to do 1,500 to 2,00 prescriptions a day,” Terry stated. “Because of COVID and us turning on our automatic refills we grew to 3,500 prescriptions a day almost immediately.”
The Sapulpa Clinic has expanded an additional space for the Diabetes and Optometry programs. The annex will allow an addition of four exam rooms. The Sapulpa Clinic is one of the smallest clinics for MCNDOH.
“There was an opportunity to rent an office space that used to be a pediatrics office around the corner from our main clinic,” Health Administrator Becky Whitlow said. “When this became available we were looking at it and trying to figure out the best option and how we can utilize this space. This gave our optometry department more space to work with to see our patients.”
The emergency room at the Okmulgee Medical Center is in the process of being redesigned. According to Terry, the new design will give the emergency room four new exam rooms, expand the waiting room and make the patient registration flow easier.
“We have been working over the last year of finishing all of the parking lots inside the hospital campus,” Terry said.
The medical center is getting a hot water upgrade and elevator upgrade. There has already been three elevators replaced and two are being modernized. All of the buildings on the medical center campus are being painted on the exterior.
“We are trying to expand the LTAC beds that’s at the physical rehabilitation center,” Terry said. “Currently we have four LTAC beds and we are going to expand up to 14 LTAC beds, and it’ll make a huge difference getting our patients in and take care of them.”
MCNDOH has began an analysis of a Riverwalk Clinic in Jenks. During Phase One, they expect it to be a Telemedicine center with a team of nurses and a nurse practitioner that will be taking medicine phone calls. The COVID hotline will be moved to this location and a pharmacy will be added.
In the medical center twelve new beds will be added to the second floor on 2 East and also for 2 West. The pharmacy drive-up window will be redesigned for safe and easy access.
“We have lack of space on the Okmulgee campus, but we are going to put in a modular building for our Diabetes program,” Terry added.
Terry continued to list other projects going on at the medical center. The heat and air system is being updated to the server room and the PACU area. The 40-year0old generator at the medical center will be replaced with a new generator. The Behavioral Health is getting a new building, to be completed in early 2022.
“So that’s just many of the projects we have got going right now, and that going to keep us busy for the next several years,” Terry said.
Since MCN took over the medical center there has been over 15 to 30 millions dollars worth of getting the medical center up to code. The roof, flooring, fixtures and sinks have been renovated over the years.
“Over the next two years will be the final push to get everything upgraded and refreshed,” Terry said.