South Deerfield veterinary hospital working on expansion

  • The Veterinary Emergency & Specialty Hospital is adding 2,600 square feet of space. STAFF PHOTO/PAUL FRANZ

  • The Veterinary Emergency & Specialty Hospital in South Deerfield. STAFF PHOTO/PAUL FRANZ

Staff Writer
Saturday, October 19, 2019

SOUTH DEERFIELD — Veterinary Emergency & Specialty Hospital is adding a 2,600-square-foot expansion to its building to give employees a more functional workspace.

Hospital administrator Keri Gardent said the hospital, which is open 24 hours a day, has seen an influx of patients since a similar operation in Springfield changed its hours a year and a half ago.

“We have grown over the years and ... we need to catch up. We’ve added new services, new staff members; we’re now the only one (in the area) open 24 hours,” she said. “That increased our caseload. So our staffing had to grow as well to keep up with that. … We’re pretty cramped. This (project) is partly to dilute some of the congestion of staff.”

She said the expansion will include three new surgery suites for its five-person surgical team. Gardent also said a board-certified oncologist was added last year and there are laws soon to be in effect requiring dedicated chemo-therapy spaces. The new space will accommodate these new laws, Gardent said. She also said the facility’s intensive care unit will be expanded, including three times as much cage space, to better accommodate the growing caseload.

Gardent declined to disclose the project’s cost.

She said construction started about a month ago and is anticipated to be completed by early next year. M.I.B. Construction is the general contractor and all subcontractors are local.

“We do that on purpose,” Gardent said. “We are a part of this community.”

The main building spans about 7,500 square feet. A smaller expansion added a few examination rooms about a year and a half ago, she said.

Gardent said the hospital, which opened in June 2006, employs about 60 people. She said employment won’t change following the expansion.