$18.6M hospital remodel charted

Sutter Auburn Faith plans ‘hotel-like’ upgrades
By: Loryll Nicolaisen, Journal Staff Writer
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Sutter Auburn Faith Hospital is about to undergo some major surgery. The Sutter Health board of trustees recently approved an $18.6 million renovation plan for the hospital that has been taking care of Auburn-area residents for more than four decades. While Sutter takes pride in providing superior health care, it will be nice to also provide patients a more modern, up-to-date facility, said Mitch Hanna, chief executive officer of Sutter Auburn Faith Hospital. A lot of people judge a book by its cover, so when they see an older, smaller facility, most people don't equate that with state-of-the-art care, Hanna said. We look forward to getting it done and having a more pleasant environment for our community. Work is scheduled to begin in May and conclude mid-2011. The first phase of work involves upgrading 61 patient rooms and converting most of the 97-bed facility's semi-private rooms to private rooms, complete with new closets, window coverings, furnishings, wall coverings and media centers, according to a Sutter press release. Our goal is to make them a little more hotel-like and a little less hospital-like, so we can provide a more comfortable place for healing, Hanna said. Patients shouldn't be affected by most of the renovations, Hanna said. Room renovations will happen on a room-by-room basis. The same goes for major upgrades planned for the hospital's four operating rooms. Modernization of these rooms comes complete with new operating room equipment and lighting and ventilation systems. The hospital-wide renovation will also result in new dual-pane windows, heating and air systems, flooring and lighting, ceiling tiles and wall coverings in common areas, and also includes the installation of patient safety equipment and improvements. Sutter Auburn Faith also plans to install a magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, lab at the Auburn campus ” current patients must travel to Sutter's imaging center in Roseville for the procedure. I'm just really excited, Hanna said. Also excited is Placer County Sheriff Ed Bonner, an eight-year member of the Sutter Health Sacramento Sierra Region board of trustees, which oversees Sutter Health services in the Placer-Sacramento-Yolo region and makes recommendations to the Sutter Health board of trustees. Profits from the Sacramento Sierra region are re-invested in the form of hospital improvements such as this one, Bonner said. I'm really pleased that the Sutter board agreed with our recommendation to make this investment in the Auburn community, Bonner said Tuesday. We've been looking for years to improve the physical plant of Sutter Auburn Faith ¦ I think it's going to be very phenomenal. It's going to be a state-of-the-art health delivery facility. It's going to be great. The Journal's Loryll Nicolaisen can be reached at, or post a comment.