South Florida Hospital News
Sunday September 22, 2019
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June 2011 - Volume 7 - Issue 12

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New Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Couples World-Class Medical Care with an Environment Conducive to Healing

When it opens July 21, the new Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital in Hollywood, Fla. will revolutionize pediatric healthcare in Broward County. The four-story, 180,000-square-foot hospital will connect to the facility’s existing spaces at Memorial Regional Hospital via an elevated two-story walkway. The $80 million construction project is the county’s first free-standing children’s hospital.

“With our new facility, Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital will continue to serve the area with leading-edge technology, compassionate care, and the expertise of the largest and most diverse group of board-certified pediatric specialists in the region,” said Nina Beauchesne, administrator, Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital. “We have truly built a hospital from the inside out, with both world-class medical professionals and an environment conducive to healing. The new setting is designed to create an extra special experience for children and their families.”
 
Since its inception 19 years ago, Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital has experienced tremendous growth and evolved into a specialized tertiary care facility for children. From 2,000 admissions in 1992, the children’s hospital now handles more than 8,000 admissions and observation cases annually. Last year, the hospital’s Pediatric Transport Team brought in close to 2,000 children in need of pediatric specialty care from other hospitals as close as Naples, Fla., to as far away as the Caribbean.
 
Staff and members of the hospital’s Family Advisory Council traveled throughout the country to visit other children’s hospitals, bringing best practice ideas for incorporation into the new facility.
 
For example, a kitchen on the first floor will change traditional hospital food service to a room service model where patients and families can call and order from a menu at any time of the day. A “Get Well Network” will bring access to television, movies, video games, the Internet and educational programs to each room. A CT scanner model in the imaging waiting room will help minimize children’s anxiety by allowing them to send a stuffed animal through the machine to see firsthand what will happen during their procedure.
 
The facility showcases an overall theme of “Power of Play” with each floor displaying themes of Sports, Arts, Games and Dreams.
 
“By listening to our patients and families, and incorporating best practices from around the country, we have made this hospital the best possible facility for South Florida,” said Beauchesne.
 
The new building will contain admissions and registration, a pediatric ambulatory and laboratory facility, family resource centers, surgical services, a 24-bed inpatient unit, pediatric imaging services, an outpatient hematology/oncology center and a 24-bed inpatient hematology/oncology unit.
 
Services that will stay at the existing children’s hospital include critical care areas, such as the Wasie Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, the pediatric intensive/cardiac care unit and pediatric emergency department and Level 1 trauma bay. Other programs that will remain in the existing structure are the Pediatric Heart Station and its heart transplant program and pediatric cardiac cath lab, pediatric inpatient rehabilitation and interventional radiology, among others.         
 
“The new hospital has been designed to include environmentally friendly features that will improve performance and efficiency in the use of water, energy and other resources,” said Al Fernandez, president of ANF Group, Inc., general contractors for the building. “The hospital will apply for Gold Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Certification,” he said.
 
Fernandez noted that a self-standing central energy plant will provide full redundancy of electrical power for seven days in case of a natural disaster. The facility is fully hurricane protected with impact windows and walls.
 
The hospital worked with the city and surrounding neighborhoods to upgrade intersections to accommodate for increased traffic flow. A greenbelt acting as a landscape buffer stands between the hospital and residential community.
 
Other members of the construction team include: Stanley Beaman & Sears, Architects; Smith, Seckman & Reid, MEP Engineers; Calvin, Giordano & Associates, Inc., Civil Engineers; Brill Rodriguez Salas & Associates, Structural Engineers; Euthenics, Equipment Planning; and Saltz Michelson Architects, LEED Consultants.
 
“Nobody wants their child to be sick, but if they are, we hope they will choose to come to our facility, which provides exceptional healthcare in an environment specifically designed with children and their families in mind,” said Beauchesne.
 
A Community Dedication Ceremony & Celebration will be held July 16, with the first patients using the facility on July 21.                                             
For more information, about Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital, visit www.jdch.org.
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