Live Today from UHS Children’s Hospital Groundbreaking

Today I’m attending the groundbreaking ceremony for the new Children’s Hospital at University Health Systems (UHS), built on the campus of Pitt County Memorial Hospital in Greenville, North Carolina. I plan to be tweeting live from the event in support of my clients at UHS. As you might imagine, this is a day that has been a long time coming, and one that will mean a great deal to families in eastern North Carolina. Days like this are the culmination of years of hard work and planning on the part of dozens of professionals: physicians, administrators, planners, engineers, architects, marketers, and more. It’s rare that I actually get to attend celebrations at client facilities. When I do, I broadcast my excitement via social media!

UHS will be breaking ground on phase one of the Children’s Hospital addition with an estimated completion in 2013. The new addition will provide dedicated space to meet the medical needs of the smallest patients and their families – from newly designed patient rooms to pediatric equipment and specially trained staff. This new Children’s Hospital addition is being designed through the eyes of a child to be patient- and family- friendly to support an environment of healing.

The first phase of the project will add 78,000 square feet and will include:

First floor:

  • Lobby area – A welcoming environment for pre-admission and admission testing; also includes a café, gift shop, theater and breastfeeding support rooms.
  • Day/medical space – A nine-bed unit for outpatient services, including the care of children requiring sedation.
  • Radiology department – Services to include ultrasound, radiology, fluoroscopy and other interventions.
  • Ronald McDonald suite – A comfortable retreat where families can enjoy meals, do laundry, shower and relax.
  • Play/therapy yard – Includes swings, a basketball court, climbing structures and picnic tables.

Second floor:

  • Kids Immunosuppressed Special Unit (KISU) – A six-bed controlled environment for children with cancer, blood disorders, sickle cell disease, kidney disorders and other illnesses that compromise the immune system.
  • Convalescent newborn unit – A 21-bed unit, all private rooms, for infants who no longer need critical care.

The UHS Children’s Hospital serves the entire eastern third of North Carolina – a 29-county region. It also serves as the teaching hospital for the Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University. The new Children’s Hospital will embody the organization’s philosophy of care, which places children and their families at the center of everything they do.

More than you hoped to know about UHS Children’s Hospital (allow me to brag):

The UHS Children’s Hospital has been serving the region for 25 years. It was formed in February, 1986, to unify all children’s services within the health system. All units and services are linked by their commitment to the concept of a family-centered, multi-disciplinary approach to care. Each patient and his/her family is cared for by a team that includes physicians, nurses, social workers, respiratory therapists, lab technicians, occupational therapists, physical therapists, child life specialists, pharmacists, school teachers, discharge planners and a wide variety of other specialists.

Services provided include care for children with a wide variety of problems and illnesses such as prematurity, heart disease, cancer, cystic fibrosis, trauma from accidents, asthma, nutritional problems, genetic disabilities, emotional and social problems, rehabilitation needs, infections and others. The Hospital has seven inpatient units: Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Neonatal Intermediate ICU, Newborn (well baby) Nursery, Pediatrics, Pediatric ICU, Pediatric Rehabilitation. There are also a variety of outpatient ambulatory care units providing care to children. Some of these are Ambulatory Surgery, Ambulatory Medicine, Observation-Holding Unit, Emergency Department, Surgicenter and Ambulatory Radiology Unit. Over 6,500 children under the age of 17 were treated at Children’s Hospital last year.

The UHS Children’s Hospital offers a pediatric/neonatal transport service throughout the 29 counties in eastern North Carolina that the hospital serves. Transport can be done both by the ground transport unit and helicopter, bringing sick children and infants to the hospital. It also returns some of those children, who are well enough, to go to their local hospitals.

This expansion of the Children’s Hospital is an important event and an expression of UHS’ commitment to caring for the people of eastern North Carolina. My firm and I are proud to be a part of it!

Post by Dan Dunlop, The Healthcare Marketer

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