Chandler Regional CEO unveils wide-ranging plans for future growth

Chandler Regional Medical Center is preparing for the future of patient care with new technology, more beds and enhanced laboratory facilities that will allow physicians to diagnose and treat an even wider variety of health concerns.

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“I have been so impressed with the staff, leadership, physicians, volunteers and the board in the East Valley,” Patty White, CEO of Chandler Regional Medical Center, said. White, a south Tempe resident, has held the hospital’s top administrative post since November.

As to what the future holds, White said a number of major changes are in the planning stages. “We have couple of big expansion projects on the books.”

White was featured guest speaker at the Chamber of Commerce’s “Chandler 100” Dinner Oct. 14, honoring influential businesses that spark community growth. While addressing the attendees, White remained enthusiastic about serving every Chandler resident through future extensions of facilities and services.

First on the drawing board is a $10 million venture to expand the hospital’s cardiac cauterization labs, which already are state-of-the-art in aiding physicians to treat cardiac conditions.

“The patient comes in with chest pain, and oftentimes they have a very quick emergency department visit and then go directly to the labs, where then we diagnose and, if possible, treat any type of heart disease,” White said.

“Cardiac and vascular services are key for us here.”

Over the past seven years, Chandler Regional has done more than 1,800 open-heart procedures, White said.

“It’s a really big program, and I’m not sure if everyone is aware of that,” she said.

In the past few months, the hospital has been at or near capacity, White said. However, the two new cardiac labs to be added by next summer will double the patient care capacity.

“Our goal is to be able to serve all the residents in the Southeast Valley, and to be able to do that with quality and efficiency,” she said. “I don’t want to have any residents who have to drive past our hospital to receive medical care.”

In addition to new labs, the medical center plans to construct a new patient tower, providing more beds to allow for more patients.

“The extra beds will add a new emergency department, new operating rooms, new critical care beds, as well as routine types of care beds with monitoring capabilities,” White said. “We also will be expanding our chapel, because we are a faith-based organization, and that’s very important to us.”

Technology is also moving forward in the medical world, and Chandler Regional Medical Center is hoping to stay on top. This year, the center starting utilizing a new surgical device that allows physicians to treat patients with far greater precision.

“We just have installed a DaVinci Surgical Robot,” White said. “The advantage for the patient is there is less pain and a shorter recovery time; people literally go home the same day they came in.”

Surgeons operate by working on a console rigged with a 3-D screen and handheld moveable arms that instruct the robotic tools making incisions on the patient, according to the clinical sales manager of DaVinci Surgery, the company that manufactures the new device.

Said Brian Leibrock:

“Blood loss is almost nothing. What we can do with this robot is perform advanced procedures with unparalleled coordination, while having minimum invasiveness on the patient.”

According to White, other newly implemented technologies include an advanced, high-speed CT scanner.

“It allows us to do cardiac work on the CT that other hospitals can’t do,” White said.

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