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Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt opens $30 million expansion

May 9, 2012

In a ceremonial ribbon cutting at 11 a.m. today, officials with the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt will celebrate the opening of a much-anticipated $30 million, 33-bed, 30,000-square-foot expansion to the hospital.

For Tennessee’s children and their families the added space represents much more– a welcoming place to hope and to heal.

Country music artist and longtime Children’s Hospital supporter Kix Brooks is expected to kick off the ceremony, which will also include patients and hospital supporters from the community.

The opening of the hospital’s expansion culminates a year of construction, creating additional acute, neonatal intensive care and medical-surgical beds.

The expansion provides other enhancements such as growth to programs including: Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplant, Cardiac Surgical Intensive Care and Congenital Heart Disease. Children’s Hospital is the only health care provider throughout the region offering these services.

Since opening in 2004, patient occupancy at Children’s Hospital has remained consistently high. The new space positions the hospital with additional capacity to meet the growing demand for the specialty and sub-specialty services.

“The Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt remains this region’s only resource for many children suffering life-threatening diseases. As such, Vanderbilt is furthering its commitment to our most vulnerable patients with this investment in additional hospital space, and by providing support for research into new therapies to treat childhood diseases,” said Jeff Balser, M.D., Ph.D., vice chancellor for Health Affairs and dean of the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.

In addition to the hospital’s expansion, more than $20 million in program enhancements are targeted for fundamental research into treatment and prevention of broad areas of childhood disease prevalent throughout Tennessee and nationwide — including prematurity, childhood cancer and childhood heart disease.

“The addition of space within the hospital, along with 21,000 square feet of new pediatric clinic space in our Doctors’ Office Tower in January, further positions Children’s Hospital as a premier national destination for the treatment of injured and ill children,” said C. Wright Pinson, MBA, M.D., deputy vice chancellor for Health Affairs and CEO of the Vanderbilt Health System.

A portion of the hospital’s expansion was created to accommodate more premature babies transferred from outlying community hospitals to Children’s Hospital’s Level 3 Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, a service providing the region’s most sophisticated level of care.

“This is a proud day for Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt,” said Luke Gregory, chief executive officer at Children's Hospital. “We are excited about the completion of this phase of growth, which will meet the increasing requirements of the community, as well as allow us to introduce new technologies and services to better serve children across the country.”

Construction for the expansion began in March 2011, and was carried out by Balfour Beatty Construction.

The five-story expansion is an extension of the existing building’s patient areas on the fourth through eighth floors. The additional 30,000 square feet brings the size of Children’s Hospital to nearly 650,000 total square feet.

At the heart of the new space is a family-friendly, sunlit atrium. Children’s Hospital’s signature child-friendly art and themes of nature continue throughout each floor. Raccoon-shaped feet traverse the brightly colored tile flooring in one area while fall leaf patterns dot the space of another.

A unique feature for the expansion is a lead-lined room to provide pioneering radiation therapy process for patients with neuroblastoma, a cancer that develops in nerve tissue. Fewer than 10 lead-lined rooms exist in the United States, with a majority of these placed within children’s hospitals. The lead lining, which weighs 27,000 pounds and encompasses the entire room, protects others in the hospital from exposure to high-dose radiation.

During fiscal year 2011, more than 197,000 patients were seen in Children’s Hospital’s clinics. The hospital’s Emergency Department cared for 52,103 children. There were 13,325 admissions during this period. Patients came from 48 States and the District of Columbia.
 

Media Inquiries:
Jeremy Rush
Media Relations Manager
Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt
Phone: 615-322-4747
Email: jeremy .rush@vanderbilt.edu
http://www.mc.vanderbilt.edu/root/vumc.php?site=npa

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