The Heart Hospital at Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center provides state-of-the-art care to patients suffering from cardiovascular disease in the Wyoming Valley and surrounding areas. Staffed by community family practitioners, as well as community cardiologists, the Heart Hospital offers the latest techniques in cardiac catheterization, open-heart surgery, and cardiac rehabilitation. It is the area's first and only facility entirely dedicated to the diagnosis and treatment of cardiac disease. The population of more than two million people in 31 counties it now serves previously had to travel as far as Maryland to seek treatment.

Level I of this 50,000-square-foot, three-floor facility includes a Cardiology Clinic and a 3,000-square-foot Cardiac Rehabilitation Facility. Level II is comprised of an in/outpatient, noninvasive diagnostic area with vascular/echo/EKG and stress-testing labs. Space planning allows for future expansion of Level II as the program grows. Level III includes a 10-bed inpatient Step-Down Unit and a state-of-the-art Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory.

The organization of the Heart Hospital was driven by the horizontal connection to the medical center supporting the program. For example, the Step-Down and Cath labs on Level III are linked to the existing ICU and OR Suite in the main Medical Center. Careful planning also separates medical staff, support, and public circulation. The main public circulation spine on Medical Center Level II extends into the public circulation system of the Heart Hospital. Given its new entry/drop-off on Level I, clear/distinct internal circulation, and links to the Medical Center, the Heart Hospital is easily accessible vertically and horizontally.

Project category: New construction (completed January 2002)

Chief administrator: John Zelonis, Operations Manager, (570) 826-7499

Firm: Francis Cauffman Foley Hoffmann, Architects, Ltd., (215) 568-8250

Design team: Harry Hummel, Principal-in-Charge; Kenneth Kramer, Project Manager; James Crispino, Master Planner; Stephen Lebowitz, Architectural Designer; Haley Driscoll, Interior Designer

Photography: © Don Pearse Photographers, Inc.

Total building area (GSF): 50,000 (new); 3,000 (renovation)

Construction cost/sq. ft.: $300

Total cost (excluding land): $15,900,000