When the Cincinnati Children’s Liberty Campus opened on August 11, 2008, 446 patients were served on that day alone. Now, a year later, there have been a total of 122,762 patient visits and the number continues to grow. To recognize the successes of the first year of the campus, there will be a celebration for employees on August 11, 2009 from 12:45 – 5 pm at the campus. Speakers for the celebration include Bill Kent, Senior Vice President, Operations and Infrastructure, Cincinnati Children’s; Angela Retzios, a member of the Cincinnati Children’s family advisory council and a frequent visitor to the Liberty Campus; and Char Mason, Vice President, Outpatient Services Administration, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center.
Char Mason explains that Cincinnati Children’s Liberty Campus was built with the goal of better servicing the large numbers of patients and families who live in Butler County and who had to travel to Cincinnati Children’s Burnet (main) campus for services. “Liberty Campus is a prime example of how we are committed to bringing world-class pediatric care to patients and families,” she said. She went on to say that patients and families are the top priority of Cincinnati Children’s and the success of the campus shows that patients and families are pleased with the services they are receiving. “Over the last year, we’ve either met or exceeded goals that we set for the campus, including our therapy, testing, and emergency room visits and we plan to continue meeting and exceeding the goals for the campus,” she said.
The advanced services available at Cincinnati Children’s Liberty Campus enable their pediatric specialists to better meet the needs of patients. The emergency department is open 24 hours-a-day, 7 days-a-week and is fully equipped and staffed to treat pediatric emergencies. It is supported around the clock by laboratory testing, X-ray and a short-stay observation unit where if needed, patients can stay for up to 23 hours. For outpatient surgery at the facility, there are eight operating rooms available for a variety of general and specialty procedures, including: dentistry and oral surgery, orthopaedic surgery, gastroenterology, urology, adolescent gynecology, general surgery, plastic surgery, ophthalmology, and otolaryngology (ENT). A helipad and a Mobile Intensive Care Unit are available around the clock for special situations that require patients to be transferred to Cincinnati Children’s main campus located near downtown Cincinnati.
Ellis Arjmand, MD, PhD, Medical Director, Cincinnati Children’s Liberty Campus, explains that the campus is off to a good start. “Surveys of families indicate that satisfaction with the overall patient experience is very high in almost every area, and parents are particularly pleased with the convenient access to pediatric specialty services. We are working to improve the patient and family experience by extending our level of service in targeted areas.”
Cincinnati Children’s Liberty Campus gives families more immediate access to a 24-hour pediatric emergency room, outpatient surgery, radiology and diagnostic imaging, laboratory services, specialized therapies and more than 20 pediatric medical and surgical specialty clinics. Jamie Theiss, Business Director, Cincinnati Children’s Liberty Campus, explains that going forward the number of surgeries that is expected to happen will increase greatly. “In the last year, we’ve had a total of 6, 839 surgeries and we are projecting that our largest areas of growth over the next year will be in the areas of surgery and specialty clinics,” he said. He explained that the ENT, Dentistry, Orthopaedics and Urology divisions currently represent the largest surgery volumes for the campus.
Kelli Kurtz, a Liberty Township resident and mother of three boys, said she and her husband, Mike, are grateful for having the Cincinnati Children’s Liberty Campus so close to home. “The Cincinnati Children’s Liberty Campus has given us more flexibility when it comes time for us to take our boys in for testing or clinic appointments,” she said. Her sons, Evan, age 12, Ben, age 8 and Connor, age 3, have all been seen at Cincinnati Children’s. Since 2006 when Ben was diagnosed with polycystic kidney disease, the family has had to make more trips to the medical center. “We are pretty frequent flyers of Cincinnati Children’s and with the Liberty Campus being so close to home, what used to take a whole day, now only takes a few hours,” she said. She explained that before the Liberty Campus was in place, she would have to allot at least an hour for travel time to and from the main Cincinnati Children’s location and she would have to take her sons out of school for a half day or a whole day. With the Liberty Campus being close, her family doesn’t have to travel as far and her sons can still make it to school. “The biggest plus about the Liberty Campus being so close to home is that my son is no longer intimidated to go to the hospital,” she said. “Because we pass the Liberty Campus on the highway at least four to five times a week, he sees it as a doctor’s office and he’s more comfortable when he goes for his appointments. To me, that makes all the difference,” said Kurtz.
Cincinnati Children’s Liberty Campus offers an array of diagnostic imaging services, including fluoroscopy, MRI, CT scans, ultrasound and nuclear medicine specialized for pediatrics. An extensive on-site laboratory is available, and specialized physical, occupational, sports and speech therapies enable patients to schedule appointments closer to home. In the pediatric balance center, there is the same type of equipment that is used by NASA astronauts when they train, and in the sports medicine clinic, patients are able to do therapeutic exercises on the same type of equipment used by the Ohio State football team.
During day and evening hours, an on-site Spanish interpreter is available to ensure all patients receive the care they need. Additional interpreters are available by phone at all times.
"Cincinnati Children's plans to continue seeking opportunities to bring more services to the children and families of the northern communities. By pursuing expanded clinical programs at the Liberty Campus, we support our mission of being the leader in improving child health,” said Mason.
About Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center is one of America’s top three children’s hospitals for general pediatrics and is highly ranked for its expertise in digestive diseases, respiratory diseases, cancer, neonatal care, heart care and neurosurgery, according to the annual ranking of best children's hospitals by U.S. News & World Report. One of the three largest children’s hospitals in the U.S., Cincinnati Children’s is affiliated with the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine and is one of the top two recipients of pediatric research grants from the National Institutes of Health.
For its achievements in transforming healthcare, Cincinnati Children's is one of six U.S. hospitals since 2002 to be awarded the American Hospital Association-McKesson Quest for Quality Prize ® for leadership and innovation in quality, safety and commitment to patient care. The hospital is a national and international referral center for complex cases, so that children with the most difficult-to-treat diseases and conditions receive the most advanced care leading to better outcomes. Additional information can be found at www.cincinnatichildrens.org.