IBERVILLE - Construction on Iberville's $20 million emergency department is nearing completion, and hospital representatives say patients should expect to have a local health clinic by Dec. 1.
The parish has been without a hospital since 2008 when River West Medical Center was destroyed by Hurricane Gustav. Patients have since been forced to drive to Baton Rouge for any medical services, and they're hoping the new facility will be able to offer the same care closer to home.
Iberville Parish teamed with Ochsner Health Systems to build the new facility, using money from the state and hurricane recovery funds. Construction began last June and Ochsner CEO Eric McMillen says they're on track to open this winter.
"Construction has been going great," McMillen said. "We're above 75 percent complete so we anticipate starting operations in December."
The new facility will not only benefit patients, but also the doctors and nurses who were forced to relocate.
"People who will work there, people who will get their care there will see this is a first class facility," McMillen said. "And we're very proud to be a part of it with the parish."
The new facility will have lab and radiology services that include the ability to perform ultrasounds, MRIs and mammographies.