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Golisano Children's Hospital / Ways to Give / Strong Kids Newsletter / 2014 Winter / Model Rooms Make New Hospital Real

Model Rooms Make New Hospital Real

Strong Kids Newsletter

Model rooms make new hospital real

Model rooms make new hospital real

Pediatrician-in-chief Nina F. Schor, M.D., Ph.D., has been planning and working toward building a new Golisano Children's Hospital since she set foot on campus in 2006, but it didn't feel entirely real until she stepped into the model rooms built this fall.

"Honestly, at first I couldn't see any of the details because I was so busy looking at the enormity of this room next to what we work with right now," said Schor, who is also the William H. Eilinger Chair of Pediatrics.

The model rooms – one Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) room and one general care pediatric room – are temporary and have been built in vacant space inside the Wilmot Cancer Center near the new hospital site. Both have been built to the exact specifications from the design, down to the faucet and paint choices.

The new eight-floor, 245,000-square-foot Golisano Children's Hospital, currently under construction on the University of Rochester Medical Center campus, will cost about $145 million and we still need to raise $16 million more before the doors open. We also need to finalize the design choices, so architects, builders, physicians and staff are double checking the placement of the little details – the light switches, the outlets, computer stations, coat racks, etc. Larger details, like whether the choice of the doors is the right one and whether the built-in bench/bed can have three storage drawers next to an additional couch/bed, are also being evaluated.

Even though the model rooms were built to hash out details, it's hard to walk into them and not be struck by their size and what they will mean for our families. The rooms were designed around three zones – caregiver, patient and family. The caregiver zone is near the door; the patient zone is in the middle and the family zone is beyond that. In the NICU rooms, this change will be the most dramatic because there are currently six babies in each NICU room.

"The family still has space to walk around, to see their baby, to sit and relax. It is going to be an enormous boon, on the one hand, to medical treatment…but the other side of it, families will feel it becomes their home, rather than that they're always in the way when a caregiver comes in to do something for their baby," Schor said. For the first time, families will be able to stay overnight with their babies in the NICU and families in the general care rooms will have privacy and more space to stay with their children. The model rooms have been able to show everyone involved in the design how well the zones work in the rooms. But, as expected, some small details need a little more work. For example, a few of the décor elements are currently being tweaked.

Model rooms make new hospital realBilly Houston, Fairport Music and Food Festival committee member, stands with Lissa McAnarney, M.D., professor and chair emerita of Pediatrics at the University of Rochester Medical Center.

Each floor in the new hospital will have a theme that reflects a different landscape in upstate New York. The NICU floor has a calm and quiet Meadow theme. In testing out those design elements, one of the wall accents in the NICU room didn't prove durable enough and will be tweaked to make it work. The general care room is from the Forest floor and some of the woodsy colors needed changing, once they were up on the walls and cabinets.

While all of this design work continues, the construction workers are busy finishing the structure of the building. Throughout the winter, the crew has completed the steel work, framed several floors and enclosed the building.

"I am so excited. And proud," Schor said.

The hospital is incredibly grateful for the community's support for creating this exciting new era of children's health care in upstate New York, but much more funding is still needed before the project is complete. To find out how you can be a part of the new hospital, visit or call the Advancement Office at (585) 273-5948. .