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Ceremonial Groundbreaking Held for Washington Hospital's Morris Hyman Critical Care Pavilion

Construction of the Morris Hyman Critical Care Pavilion, the largest public works project in the history of Washington Township Health Care District, was officially commemorated with a ceremonial groundbreaking held on Tuesday, February 24, at noon.

“The Morris Hyman Critical Care Pavilion will answer the District’s need for expanded emergency and critical care facilities and will be among the most advanced in the Bay Area,” said Nancy Farber, chief executive officer of Washington Hospital Healthcare System. “Completion of this project is critical for the Hospital to continue to provide high-quality health care services and provide them in a seismically safe facility.”

Named for the founder of Fremont Bank, thanks to a generous donation by the Fremont Bank Foundation, the Morris Hyman Critical Care Pavilion will house a new, and expanded Emergency Department, which will be approximately four times the size of the current Emergency Department and will also house a state-of-the-art intensive care unit (ICU) as well as and an advanced coronary care unit (CCU). The new ICU and CCU will have 48 beds compared to the current capacity of 28 beds. All of the rooms will be private and larger in size. The pavilion will also have an additional 68 private med-surg beds and support space.

“The groundbreaking for the new Morris Hyman Critical Care Pavilion is an important occasion for many reasons,” said Hattie Marie Hyman Hughes, president of the Fremont Bank Foundation. “Not only will this new building be a vital and critical asset to the community but my father, Morris Hyman, truly loved this Hospital and would see this as an honor to have his name recognized by the dedicated staff and institution of Washington Hospital.”

The critical care pavilion, which represents phase two of Washington Hospital’s three- phase master plan, will use the latest seismic technology to ensure it will continue to function in the event of a major earthquake. The foundation of the building will be supported by a technology called base isolation, which is designed to move during a seismic event while keeping the building intact and functional. The seismic improvements, while important to ensure the safety of our patients and staff during an earthquake, are required as a result of California’s unfunded seismic mandate that requires hospitals to meet strict seismic standards by 2030. The Morris Hyman Critical Care Pavilion is expected to be completed by 2018.

"Morris Hyman was not only the founder of our bank but one of the most influential leaders of our community, particularly as it was being created in the 1950s,” said Michael Wallace, board chairman of Fremont Bank and a member of the Washington Township Health Care District board of directors. “He knew the importance of continuously improving the Hospital’s services as our community grew and as technology and the practice of medicine changed over the years.”

In addition to the Critical Care Pavilion, construction on a new parking garage is underway, which will provide ample employee parking and chargers for plug-in vehicles. The parking garage is needed to make room for future construction as part of phase three of the Hospital’s facility master plan, which will include a new patient building. The phase three building will be completed ahead of the 2030 state seismic deadline.