ESCONDIDO–Palomar Health, the largest public health-care district in California, has delivered on its promise to build a world-class, state-of-the art hospital in northern San Diego County and will provide the public a unique opportunity to view it on July 28.
Palomar Health plans to hold a Community Celebration on July 28 to mark the completion and pending August 19 opening of the new $956-million, 11-story Palomar Medical Center in Escondido.
“The opening of the new Palomar Medical Center will mark a new era in health care for the region, with innovations and technologies that create a world-class healing environment,” says Michael H. Covert, president and CEO of Palomar Health.
Members of the public will get their first viewing of the 740,000-square-foot, 288-bed “Hospital of the Future,” one of the most technologically advanced and sustainable hospitals ever built in the nation.
“This is our grand celebration,” says Gerald Bracht, chief administrative officer of the new Palomar Medical Center.“We want the people who live in the communities that we serve to come and see their new hospital. It’s the only opportunity they’ll have to tour the building and see the areas before they become off-limits to the public,” he adds.
The new Palomar Medical Center is scheduled to open and treat its first patients on August 19.
Palomar Health has designed a day of celebration to thank the community for supporting the construction of a hospital that was built with the future in mind. In 2004, district voters overwhelmingly passed Proposition BB, the $496-million bond measure that helped pay for the construction of the first new hospital in northern San Diego County in more than 30 years.
The Community Celebration will take place from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the new Palomar Medical Center, 2185 West Citracado Parkway, Escondido. As many as 10,000 people are expected to attend the July 28 event. An employee celebration will take place before the community event, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
The free event will feature self-guided tours of the new hospital, technology demonstrations, free food and drinks, live music, free health screenings and exhibits and children’s activities. Several area restaurants are participating in the “Taste of North County” event from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
A formal program featuring a flag-raising and ribbon-cutting ceremony is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m.
Palomar Health Champion and former San Diego TV newscaster Carol LeBeau will be live on stage conducting interviews with district and community leaders and sharing compelling stories about the new Palomar Medical Center. Nearly 6,000 people worked on the construction phase of the project and close to 2,000 will work there. Twenty-five million pounds of steel were used to build the hospital.
Celebrants will have the opportunity to tour a state-of-the-art hospital that incorporates innovative technology within a comforting, healing environment. The new Palomar Medical Center features all-private patient rooms with dedicated family space, beautiful gardens designed to promote healing, surgical suites built to optimize clinical excellence and emergency rooms created to maximize life-saving efficiency.
Self-guided tours of limited, but representative, sections of the new hospital will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Parking at the new hospital is limited to disabled guests. There will be free off-site parking and shuttle service at Palomar Health San Marcos, Cal State University San Marcos and at the following intersections: West Citracado Parkway and Andreasen Drive, Enterprise Street and Andreasen Drive, Auto Park Way and Andreasen Drive. Golf carts will provide free shuttle support along West Citracado Parkway.
The North County Transit Breeze Route 353 will also provide service to and from the event, free to employees; $1.75 public fee. The Breeze can be accessed from the following Escondido locations: Nordahl Marketplace, corner of Highway 78 and Nordahl Road; Nordahl Road Sprinter Station; intersection of 9th Avenue and W. Valley Parkway; Escondido Transit Center, 700 W. Valley Parkway; and Palomar Health Downtown Campus, 555 E. Valley Parkway.
For additional information about parking and the event, visit: www.palomarhealth.org/opening.