The Valdez Star - Serving Prince William Sound and Copper River Basin

 
 

By Lee Revis
Editor, Valdez Star 

Hospital will get MRI facility this summer

City approves contract to add on to existing building on campus

 


After several false starts, Providence Valdez Medical Center is readying for the upcoming construction season after the Valdez City Council approved a $1.433 million contract with Wasilla-based Wolverine Supply to construct a new modular building that will be house an MRI.

The addition of the magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) will add a significant level of medical services available to Valdez patients.

City manager John Hozey said in an interview Monday that it is hoped the project can be completed by the end of the upcoming construction season.

"We're not on an exact schedule," he said.

Vagaries in procurement, weather conditions and several other unknowns come into play in the short Valdez construction season. The full design of the project must also pass muster with the State Fire Marshal.

The MRI project is the top priority project on the master plan put together by the task force that was formed to put fourth recommendations to the city for future expansion of the hospital campus. The City of Valdez owns the hospital and it is managed by Providence Alaska under a long-term contract.

The building housing the MRI will be a new modular that will be attached to the current hospital on the east side, near the current location of the CAT scan.

The MRI itself is a refurbished GE 1.5 Tesla HDxt according to city documents on the project.

The contract between the City of Valdez and Wolverine Supply is risky for both sides, as the contract approved by council is for a turn-key project. Due to a myriad of complex laws governing rural hospitals and funding for government paid medical care, the cost of the project in its entirety may not exceed $1.5 million total.

Source: City of Valdez

The graphic gives a first peak at the proposed layout of the new building planned for the hospital campus that will house an MRI.

The contract, which was approved by council at its Feb. 3 meeting, was not the city's first attempt to begin the project. The council originally approved a first phase contract with Wolverine last November for $138,000. That contract was for design of the modular building and "site adaptation consulting services" only. That contract was not executed.

According to Hozey, PVMC later gave the city administration information that the MRI the city had planned to purchase was not adequate and the project was in jeopardy of not being cost effective on either side.

The agenda statement submitted to council by Dean Day, capital facilities director, said the city consulted its attorney and asked Wolverine to amend the contract to include a fully functional facility, including the MRI.

 

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