CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Members of the board of trustees of Charleston Area Medical Center took a tour of the still-under-construction CAMC Cancer Center Wednesday. The three-story building in Kanawha City will eventually house all the hospital’s cancer programs.
“We plan on opening in May of next year so we’re more than half way from when construction started,” said CAMC President and CEO David Ramsey.
The hospital system broke ground on the cancer center in the summer of 2012. The goal is to consolidate all the cancer programs into one building rather than scattered throughout the three hospitals. Ramsey said the cancer center will be state-of-the-art. It will also provide creature comforts to make patients feel more at home while they’re receiving treatment.
Work on the first floor of the building continues. During Wednesday’s tour board members got to see work on the elevator shaft, drywall going up and walls being moved into place. Some spots on the second floor are already getting their first coat of paint. It’s an exciting time for Ramsey.
“It’s such a treat to see it in this phase and to know what it will look like down the road when it’s totally done,” Ramsey said.
The front entrance will be a wall of glass. There’s also a stone fireplace that reaches the ceiling with plenty of room for seating. The breast cancer center will occupy the entire third floor.
Currently the project is on schedule. It’s located at the former home of Watt Powell Park just across MacCorkle Ave. from CAMC Memorial.
“(The builders) should turn it over to us about the end of March. It will take about a month to clean it and move all the equipment in,” said Ramsey.
The grand opening is for May. Ramsey said unfortunately there will be a lot of people coming and going from the building in the future.
“Regrettably, the incidence of cancer just continues to increase mostly because we’re living longer.”
Ramsey stressed the cancer center is a building that will serve the hospital system long into the future.