Mercy Hospital in Oelwein is planning some major renovations.

According to a news release today (Tuesday) from Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare in Waterloo, the owner of Mercy Hospital of Franciscan Sisters, the renovations include the expansion of the hospital emergency department, patient registration area, and laboratory.

Construction is slated to begin later this summer, and should be finished in about 18 months.

The proposed expanded emergency medical services facilty will house the Mercy Ambulance, which will allow climate controlled patient delivery to the emergency department.

The new registration offices will provide increased privacy between patient and staff.

Plus the emergency walk-in entrance will move toward the laboratory, to decrease the disruption to the emergency department and also increase the accessibility to the lab.

The project is estimated to cost $1.5 million, and will be funded by capital funds from Wheaton, and contributions from donors to the Mercy Foundation.

The construction is not expected to disrupt current services at the hospital.

A ground breaking ceremony is also being planned.