Doors open and shut every day and we don’t give them a single though. But on occasion a door can make a difference in caring for those who are most vulnerable. A row of 300-pound sliding doors were recently installed in the Williamsburg Regional Hospital ICU and were welcomed by staff who now have the ability to treat COVID patients.
Each ICU patient room has curtains; however, in order to treat COVID-19 patients, glass doors would have to be installed. Paying for them would prove challenging so Dr. Troy Gamble turned to the Hospital Foundation for help. The foundation launched a campaign to raise the funds with Gamble being the first to donate. Within days they reached their $18,000 goal. “People have graciously donated,” said Foundation Director Fran Clowny. “They (doors) look like they were made there.”
The doors complement the room’s negative pressure which helps prevent airborne diseases from escaping the room and infecting other people. Buck Turbeville, engineer and safety director for the hospital. Turbeville explained the daunting process. “This is the only hospital like this in South Carolina,” said Turbeville.
Williamsburg Regional Hospital suspended operations in the wake of the October 2015 historic flood. A year later, the community celebrated the opening of the 22,000 sq. ft modular facility. “Getting this additional barrier is an asset to keeping infections down, protecting our patients, and protecting our staff,” he said. The hospital is acclaimed for its low infection rating.
The Foundation is currently campaigning for ventilators and a UV robot that sterilizes entire rooms. A new hospital is planned to be built just north of Kingstree near Highway 52. Hospital CEO Sharon Poston is encouraged the doors will be used in the new facility.