Staff, patients and visitors of the Knoxville Hospital and Clinics (KHC) have the opportunity to look at full-scale models of what the new inpatient rooms and clinic examination corridors should look like when the hospital's upcoming remodel project is complete. 

KHC Facilities Director John Gotta said the actual blue prints were used in constructing the models. The dimensions of the models reflect those of the actual rooms when completed. 

The models were built to allow staff to get an idea of what the new rooms will be like. They have also been able to provide input and feedback, as the design process moves into its final stages. KHC Public Relations Manager Katrina Nelson said that staff has enjoyed having this level of involvement in the process. 

The exam room model was built inside the hospital's main lobby. Each of these rooms will be 120 square feet. Today's rooms are 90 square feet. 

Not only are the rooms large in size, but doorways will be wider. Doors will be 48 inches wide, versus the current 44, in the patient rooms. Each patient room will be one-and-a-half times the size of the current patient rooms. The increase in the size of the rooms is to accommodate technology and to allow more people to be in a room. Corridors of the hospital will be widened from four feet to six, as well. 

The patient room model is in a "multi-purpose" room in one wing of the hospital. Gotta and Nelson said the public is welcome to look at this model, if one can find a staff member to provide the tour. 

As we've reported, the patient rooms will include larger restrooms, with a private shower. The larger restrooms will also make it easier for nurses to assist patients, if necessary. 

Gotta said the models were built in one day. The hospital's contractor for the remodeling project came down to assist. There are many little things, such as shelving and cabinets, that will also be improved when the remodeling project is complete. 

Another aspect of the remodel, featured on the wall of the model patient room, is a new communications tool. A keypad on the wall of the inpatient room will be designed to notify a nurse directly, most likely by telephone, of the needs of a patient or the room's status. Gotta said no system has been selected for this communication yet. 

The model rooms are not expected to remain standing for much longer. Gotta believes they will be taken down next week, as staff will have had ample time to provide the feedback being sought. 

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