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  • MRH awarded over $1 million for expansion project

    OCTOBER 27, 2022

    Katie Mackin
    (207) 723-7273


    Millinocket Regional Hospital awarded over $1 million for ED expansion

    Millinocket Regional Hospital (MRH) has received a grant totaling $1.067 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds from Penobscot County. These funds will support the next phase of the planning process, including engineering and design, for a major renovation and expansion of its Emergency Department (ED).
    As the sole source of care for acute psychiatric patients, behavioral health patients in acute distress, and patients with emergent care needs in the Katahdin Region, the MRH Emergency Department has been operating at (or near) full capacity throughout the COVID pandemic. The influx of patients with diverse physical and mental health needs have accentuated the immediate need for a complete re-engineering of the thirty-year-old ED space, which is no longer adequate for serving the vast and immense health needs of the community.

    Plans for the new Emergency Department involve renovating the current 9,000 sq. ft. footprint and expanding the footprint by another 10,000 sq. ft.; doubling the working capacity of the ED and providing dedicated overflow space to accommodate future surges in volume. Each room is to be equipped with negative air pressure to protect patients and staff from airborne pathogens. The plan calls for 10 treatment rooms with three specially equipped rooms designated for trauma and cardiac care and four dedicated rooms specifically designed to care for psychiatric patients and substance use disorder patients awaiting placement at other facilities. A separate decontamination room will be constructed to treat patients who have been exposed to toxic chemicals and other agents. And lastly, an entrance designated for emergency patients will be added to better serve our patients.

    “These funds will have a lasting effect on the delivery of healthcare services in northern Penobscot County for years to come,” said Dr. Bob Peterson, Chief Executive Officer of MRH. “We sincerely thank the Penobscot County Commissioners for their vision and long-range commitment to the Katahdin region.”

    This is the second phase of planning for the ED project. A feasibility study and concept design were completed earlier this year with the help of funding secured by Eastern Maine Development Corporation (EMDC).

    As the planning moves forward, the hospital’s grant writing team is working in conjunction with the Legacy Medical Foundation to obtain additional funding for the construction of this major capital project that will advance healthcare for the Katahdin Region.

    Those interested in making a tax-deductible gift to support this incredible undertaking can do so by contacting Michael Crowley, President of Legacy Medical Foundation, at (207) 723-7419 or by email at


    Penobscot County Commissioners Laura Sanborn, Peter Baldacci, and Andre Cushing III present Chief Executive Officer of Millinocket Regional Hospital, Dr. Robert Peterson, with a check totaling $1.067 million to help fund the expansion of the MRH Emergency Department. Photo provided by Lisette Carrithers of the Penobscot County Commissioners’ office.






    About Millinocket Regional Hospital

    Millinocket Regional Hospital (MRH) is a 25-bed Critical Access Hospital nestled at the base of Baxter State Park that provides vital healthcare services to those who live, work, and play in the Katahdin Region.  Beyond the friendly staff and award-winning, individualized patient care, MRH provides acute inpatient and outpatient services as well as an impressive range of general and specialty services from orthopedic and general surgery to cancer care.

    Providing jobs to approximately 250 people, MRH is the largest employer in the Katahdin Region and a crucial economic driver within its community. For more information, visit or


    About Legacy Medical Foundation

    Legacy Medical Foundation was established in 2020 to continue the tradition of philanthropy at Millinocket Regional Hospital by supporting patient care, wellness, and the quality of life in our region. We are a 501(c)(3) organization with a tax identification number of 85-2352634.