AFCH Expansion a Resounding Success

A bed in the new Universal Care Unit.
A bed in the new Universal Care Unit


The MRI scanner in the new imaging pavilion.
The MRI scanner in the new imaging pavilion.

In May, American Family Children's Hospital (AFCH) completed its current building project, which includes adding a seventh and eighth floor and opening a state-of-the-art imaging pavilion on the first floor. The eighth floor includes a 14-bed, Level IV Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) and a 12-bed Universal Care Unit.

The facilities were built with support from the AFCH "Sick Kids Can't Wait" campaign.

The new NICU provides care for premature and full-term infants who typically have multiple medical problems and/or need immediate surgery to survive. It provides an optimal healing environment for the baby and maximum comfort and convenience for families.

The Universal Care Unit serves children whose medical needs exceed the capabilities of a general care unit, but do not necessitate a stay in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit. It has a particular focus on preparing families whose children are dependent on technology, such as gastrostomy tubes or tracheostomies, for the transition from the hospital to home care.

The imaging pavilion allows physicians to obtain high-quality magnetic resonance imaging, fluoroscopy and ultrasound with an up to 60 percent reduction in radiation exposure. AFCH is the first children's hospital in the world to offer the lower-dose radiation technology in images obtained for cardiac catheterization and neurovascular procedures.

The imaging pavilion, along with a new multispecialty pediatric hybrid suite, is part of a "universal room concept." This allows pediatric physicians from multiple specialties to share equipment needed to care for children with congenital heart disease, arrhythmias, neurovascular diseases and tumors that require image-directed biopsies.

Since its opening in May, the new floor has exceeded all patient census projections.

View All Year in Review Stories