May 25, 2021 2:19 PM

Geary Community Hospital returns to normal operations

Posted May 25, 2021 2:19 PM

UPDATE:

Geary Community Hospital returned to normal operations Tuesday morning. The emergency generator for the hospital has been restored and is ready to activate if GCH should ever lose power in the foreseeable future.

"We appreciate the help from Junction City Fire Department, Riley County EMS and Dickinson County EMS for transporting our patients, Ascension Via Christi-Manhattan, Stormont Vail-Topeka and Valley View Senior Center for resuming care of our patients, and Konza Prairie Community Health Center for storing all our state vaccines.  Our patient's safety and care were our top priority, and it could not have been done without a community collaborative effort," said Ashley King, Director of Communications for Geary Community Hospital.

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During routine weekly maintenance Monday afternoon, the generator at Geary Community Hospital was not operable. Hospital officials have announced that they are currently waiting for parts.

In abundance of caution, GCH transferred all patients to surrounding hospitals. All surgical and elective procedures were cancelled until further notice. Clinics will continue to operate as usual. The emergency room will continue to be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Ashley King, Director of Communications, said to be proactive about the situation, patients were transferred out in case GCH would be without electricity and could not be cared for in the hospital. Power remained on Monday, but concern about potential storms in the evening led to the transfer decision.

King confirmed there were nine patients in the hospital that were transferred. EMS transportation was provided by the Junction City Fire Department, Dickinson County EMS and Riley County EMS. The patients were taken to Via Christi Hospital in Manhattan and Stormont Vail Hospital in Topeka.

King noted that the generator problem is believed to have involved a starter that went out.  That generator requires two starters to operate. " Officials believe that another generator was located in Wichita and was due to be brought to Junction City late Monday evening. King said by the time the rewiring work is completed they hope to be back up with the new generator by the close of business on Tuesday or early Wednesday morning. Patients could then be returned to Geary Community Hospital after that time.