Newswise — AKRON, Ohio (April 23, 2015) – The fastest growing pediatric hospital in the nation is expanding again to meet the growing needs of the patients and families it treats from around northern Ohio and the country.

On May 5, Akron Children’s Hospital will open the doors to its new $180 million Kay Jewelers Pavilion.

The 7-story, nearly 370,000-square-foot facility is home to a new neonatal intensive care unit with 75 private rooms, a new emergency department, an expanded outpatient surgery center, and the hospital’s first special delivery unit for high-risk births.

Construction began in May 2013 after a year-long process that brought doctors, nurses, patient families, hospital leaders, architects and engineers together to uncover ways to make the new space as family-focused and efficient as possible.

One immediate benefit is that the building was completed two months ahead of schedule and $60 million under budget.

“Our promise to the community is to treat each child as our own, treat others as we would want to be treated and to turn no child away,” said William Considine, president and chief executive officer of Akron Children’s. “The new building is a physical embodiment of that mission, and you can see it in every detail – from the whimsical backyard theme, to streamlined care delivery, to comfortable and efficient patient and staff areas. This year is our 125th anniversary and we’ve never been so excited about the future.”

The new building will help the hospital accommodate its increasing patient volumes and better manage high-risk births.

  • The GOJO Outpatient Surgery Center has seen its patient volume double in the past 20 years.
  • The emergency department, which is the second busiest pediatric ER in Ohio, was built to handle 44,000 annual visits but has been averaging more than 60,000.
  • The Women’s Board of Children’s Hospital Neonatal Intensive Care Unit has activated its emergency overflow beds 13 times in the past 4 years.
  • And, about 100 high-risk babies born each year at other local hospitals are transported at birth to Akron Children’s NICU.

Additionally, more than 400 pieces of child-friendly art will adorn the building’s walls, including 285 pieces created by local school children.

The Murdough Family lobby will feature backyard fences with fun peek-a-boo holes, the FedEx Outdoor Amphitheater will provide a place for families to enjoy the outdoors and the Kay Kafé will offer a variety of dining options such as sandwiches, salads, soups and specialty coffees.

About Akron Children’s HospitalRanked among the best children’s hospitals by U.S. News & World Report, Akron Children’s Hospital is the fastest growing children’s hospital in the U.S. according to Modern Healthcare. We own and operate two pediatric hospitals in northeast Ohio and more than 80 primary and subspecialty care locations. We have the second busiest emergency department in the state and perform more pediatric surgeries than any other hospital in northeast Ohio. With more than 800,000 patient visits each year, we’ve been leading the way to healthier futures for children and communities through expert medical care, prevention and wellness programs since 1890. Learn more at

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