|A trauma room at StoneSpring Emergency Center is seen days before opening for patients Sept. 9. The full-service emergency room has board-certified emergency physicians, an on-site laboratory, X-ray, CT and ultrasound machines. Times-Mirror File Photo/Beverly Denny|
Five months ago Denise Sardo and Diane Massucci were staring at a concrete slab and steel girders in the middle of Dulles.
Sardo is the director of emergency services at Reston Hospital and Massucci is the new director of that concrete and girder edifice which is now the StoneSpring Emergency Center.
The center sits on a plot of land that looks like it's still a work in progress, mostly because it is. A brand new medical facility on the same campus, called the StoneSpring Hospital Center is set to break ground this fall.
For now the facility services an area that previously had been under served by emergency medical care in the past.
Patients have traditionally had to travel great distances to get to an emergency room. In talking with Loudoun County Emergency Medical Services, Massucci has been told they were out of service sometimes up to two hours before the StoneSpring facility.
Massucci had only been on the job for three months at the point when her and Sardo talked, but she remembers being asked “this is your trauma room, how do you want it set up? Where do you want the oxygen? Where do you want the monitors?”
The two were staring at an empty space, but Massucci understood this could be something fresh and new for her.
"I thought it would be a once in a lifetime experience," said Massucci.
Part of her interest in the new position was she got to prepare and make decisions about the future of the center that few typical directors of an emergency room get to experience.
She would be at the ground level, making decisions about "staffing, equipment, staffing patterns and working inter-collaboratively."
Christopher Crowell was one of the people she has been working inter collaboratively with. He is the new medical director at StoneSpring.
After the groundbreaking in January, Crowell went through the interview process and was hired in February.
He is responsible for coordinating and working with the physicians, while Massucci will take over the day-to-day operations of the facility and will be working with the nurses to coordinate their daily routine.
The first interaction between the two was when Massucci came in for an interview with Crowell in March. It became clear to both throughout the interview process that they had the same philosophy on patient care.
They wanted nurses with years of emergency room experience and a great deal of compassion for their patients.
The two new directors conducted training drills and an intense vetting process worked to find the proper support system to execute their vision.
The two also wanted to make sure they were on the same page with the fire department and emergency medical services in Loudoun so they went for ride-a-longs and brought the Loudoun EMS team into their location so that the EMS team's first experience with the facility wasn't during an emergency.
Massucci believes the technology in the facility will make it quicker to get patients signed into the facility, and will also make it easier for nurses to give more compassionate care.
Prior to heading up the Stone Spring facility Massucci worked as research coordinator at Reston Hospital, and Crowell was practicing emergency medicine at Reston Hospital.
The facility opened Sept. 2 and is at 24570 Gum Spring Road along Route 50.
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