(Photo Courtesy of UMMC)
The University of Mississippi Medical Center is two weeks away from officially opening its seven-story pediatric hospital expansion.
The Kathy and Joe Sanderson Tower of Children’s of Mississippi, which doubles the square-footage of UMMC’s current pediatric hospital space, will open its doors at the beginning of November.
According to UMMC Chair of Pediatrics Dr. Mary Taylor, if all goes as planned, surgeries will begin on Monday, November 2nd with ICU patients making the transition within the following days.
“We’re now in the preparation phase, training our staff to make sure they’re familiar with the building and making sure everything is in place,” Taylor said. “Starting November 2nd, we will be doing surgeries there and having outpatient clinic visits there. On November 3rd, we’ll move the pediatric intensive care unit patients over. On November 4th, we’ll move the neonatal intensive care patients over.”
The $180 million, state-of-the-art tower will feature 88 private neonatal intensive care rooms, 32 additional ICU rooms, surgical suites, operating rooms, and an imaging center designed specifically for children. The imaging center will transform MRI and CT scanners into the likes of pirate ships and sandcastles, allowing faculty to use less sedation on patients.
“Our medical team will soon have a children’s hospital that matches their expertise,” Taylor said. “When children come there, particularly ones that see multiple specialists, they’ll be able to see them all at one place.”
Taylor also stated that the combination of this expansion and the Blair E. Batson Tower that is currently in use will completely transform Mississippi’s only children’s hospital.
“The Batson Tower will continue to be a key part of pediatric care in the state, and with this expansion, care there will be even better,” she explained. “We will have our in-patients on levels two through five of [the Batson Tower]. We are also adding a neurodiagnostic floor, meaning for sleep EEG studies, neurology studies, as well as sleep medicine studies.”
On an annual basis, Children’s of Mississippi sees over 170,000 children. To learn more about the new Kathy and Joe Sanderson Tower, you can click here or watch the entire interview with Taylor below.