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Jackson Hospital looking to add ‘pandemic wing’

Published: Oct. 19, 2021 at 10:46 PM CDT
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JACKSON COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Jackson Hospital in Marianna is working to get a grant to improve the hospital and better serve patients.

After COVID hit, hospitals had to find a way to create negative pressure rooms.

“Right now what we have is, we have plywood in the windows with exhaust fans, HEPA exhaust fans, in each room and those are used to exhaust the rooms and create a negative pressure in the room,” Director of Engineering Kevin Daniel said.

Although this is technically working for the hospital, it was meant to be temporary. Now, they’re looking at a more permanent solution.

“We’re attempting to get a grant so that we can change our third floor into a ‘pandemic wing,’ which will allow us to convert rooms to standard patient rooms or negative pressure rooms or positive pressure rooms,” Daniel said.

Negative pressure rooms are important to hospitals in more than one way.

“The benefit of a negative pressure room, it allows for isolation with the particulate to be exhausted directly out of the room, instead of recirculating in the room or to other areas,” Daniel added.

Renovating these rooms will also allow hospital officials to remove the plywood from the windows, allowing sunlight into the room, and giving patients the ability to look outside.

This project is estimated to cost around $2 million, which would be covered by the grant. The grant application has to be submitted by Nov. 1, and if Jackson Hospital receives the grant, the project is expected to be completed in the next two years.

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