MRMC to expand

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By Amy Ryffel-Kragh

The operating room expansion project at Munroe Regional Medical Center (MRMC) will soon be under way.

The approximately $10 million project will include three full service operating rooms, which will primarily be used for orthopedic and general surgeries, a 20-bay post anesthesia care unit and an expanded surgical waiting area.

On Monday, more than a dozen people, including MRMC president and CEO Steve Purves, director of the Munroe Foundation, Beth McCall, and House of Representatives speaker of the House, Larry Cretul, participated in the groundbreaking ceremony.

Instead of turning dirt, a wall-breaking celebration was held on the third floor of the hospital in the operating room. The group put on hard hats, protective glasses and used a sledgehammer to hit the wall, which will come down as part of the growth project.

To help pay for it, the Munroe Foundation has raised about $2 million for the expansion and plans to raise another $1.5 million. They received a $500,000 “gift” for the project and other monies have been raised through fundraisers including the recent Del Webb’s Spruce Creek golf tournament, which raised about $30,000 for the hospital.

In addition, the foundation recently held “Flavors of Munroe.” The event, which was held at Golden Ocala Golf and Equestrian Club, featured nine chefs competing against each other for the best dishes, said Craig Curry, chairman of the Munroe Foundation. About 250 to 300 people attended, which raised more than $50,000 for MRMC. “It was very successful,” he said.

The expansion project will also include a central office complex with conference room, on-call sleeping area for surgeons and a newly redesigned nursing station, according to a press release from MRMC. The project at the non-profit hospital is set to begin on May 26.

Munroe Regional Medical Center is at 1500 S.W. 1st Avenue in Ocala. The Munroe Regional Medical Center’s Emergency Center at TimberRidge is at 9521 S.R. 200.