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Hundreds to Celebrate ‘New ICUs, and a Little House, Too’ at Strong

Intensive care units and a second Ronald McDonald House under construction

Tuesday, September 30, 2003

More than 200 people are expected to celebrate the start of construction on new intensive care units and a Ronald McDonald House that will benefit critically ill or injured children and adults cared for at Strong Memorial Hospital and Golisano Children’s Hospital at Strong. The celebration, featuring faculty, staff, donors, and families, is scheduled from 4 to 6 p.m. today, Thursday, Sept. 25, in the House of Six Nations cafeteria.

Construction is under way on three important projects – each on separate floors - being built above the two-story emergency department and Laurence and Dennis Kessler Regional Trauma Unit on Elmwood Avenue. On the third floor, Strong Memorial Hospital is building a new burn-trauma intensive care unit for adults. On the fourth floor, Golisano Children’s Hospital is building a new, 22-bed Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) and Pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (PCICU) for children. A fifth floor will be home to a second Rochester-area Ronald McDonald House, making Rochester only the third location in the world to offer a House on-site. The hospital and Ronald McDonald House continue to raise funds for each of the projects.

“"These projects will provide our most critically ill and injured patients with the best chance for survival and recovery, and the best opportunity to return to healthy, productive lives," says C. McCollister Evarts, M.D., senior vice president and vice provost for health affairs at the University of Rochester, and CEO of the University of Rochester Medical Center and Strong Health.

 Better burn and trauma care

            To provide an even better level of care to adults from throughout the Rochester region, Strong Memorial Hospital is embarking on an ambitious project to build a new Burn and Trauma Intensive Care Unit. The new unit will be strategically located directly above the emergency department, allowing for easy transfer between the units for more seamless patient care.


            The 22-bed unit will consist of 15 beds devoted to trauma care and seven beds designated for adults suffering from burns. In the event of a disaster, eight rooms in the new unit will accommodate two patients each. The new unit will include a family waiting room, centralized nursing stations, step-down patient rooms, and the newest equipment and technology.


Enhancing pediatric intensive care

During the last decade, in an effort to ensure that no child need leave Rochester for health care, Golisano Children’s Hospital dramatically upgraded its specialty services. By doing so, it increased the need for intensive care beds, which children need after undergoing many types of surgery. Given projections of patient care needs, the current PICU will soon be undersized. While still functional, the 12-bed unit - opened in 1989 - is often operating near capacity.

As the only one between Buffalo and Syracuse, the PICU at Golisano Children’s Hospital is a unique resource to the region, one that isn’t duplicated or found elsewhere in Rochester. In fact, every child in our region who requires intensive care is admitted to the PICU at Golisano Children’s Hospital. This eliminates the high cost of duplication of services, but, most importantly, it allows for centralization of resources and expertise. 

Significant gifts from B. Thomas Golisano, Daniel and Nancy Robbins, and Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club have allowed the hospital to start construction on the new PICU and PCICU two years ahead of schedule. There’s never been a more exciting - or more important - time to support Golisano Children’s Hospital, says Elizabeth McAnarney, M.D., pediatrician-in-chief. “We are making significant enhancements to Rochester’s only children’s hospital,” McAnarney says. “With continued support from the community, we will be able to better help children when they need help most.”

A House Within the Hospital

An expanded partnership between Ronald McDonald House Charities of Rochester and Golisano Children’s Hospital leaves the community poised to become the third in the world to offer a hospital-based Ronald McDonald House for parents whose children are critically ill.

The 4,000-square-foot Ronald McDonald House likely will offer bedrooms, a family lounge, kitchen and dining area, and laundry facilities. “The local Ronald McDonald House has been a home-away-from-home to more than 4,400 families during the past 13 years,” says Sharon Levine, executive director of Ronald McDonald House Charities of Rochester. “By building a second House within the hospital, we’ll be able to expand our reach, offering enhanced services for families who live throughout the region.”

             Ronald McDonald House Charities of Rochester reaches out to families in the community by supporting other children’s charities, as well as a variety of programs in the region that promote children’s education, health, and social well being. Through their work, leaders from the Ronald McDonald House serve families who are in the midst of medical crisis, as is often the case when a child is placed in an intensive care unit.


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