New children’s hospital opens in King of Prussia
With the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s Center City location often 90% full, the new hospital in Montco is expected to add capacity as demand for beds increases.
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The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia will open a new hospital in King of Prussia on Wednesday.
The new 250,000-square-foot facility will have a 24/7 pediatric emergency department, the first in this area. There will also be 52 private inpatient rooms, including 16 pediatric intensive care beds. It will be next to CHOP’s existing specialty care center at 550 South Goddard Boulevard.
CHOP has been working on this site for years, and officially announced the new hospital in 2018. Many patients came from the King of Prussia area in Montgomery County to the Center City location, which is why the new site was chosen, said Dr. Allison Ballantine, associate chief medical officer at CHOP’s Middleman Family Pavilion in King of Prussia.
“(The Philadelphia hospital) is obviously struggling with some … census constraints,” she said, noting that it is often around 90% full. “We desperately need more pediatric beds.”
She added that the Philadelphia location has grown over the years to take in patients not just from the region, but from other states and even other countries.
“That growth has put a lot of pressure on the 600 or so beds that we have downtown.”
CHOP originally planned to open the King of Prussia location with 52 beds first, and take a year or two before expanding to full capacity. However, because there has been so much demand for beds, CHOP plans to move the schedule up and open an additional floor by the fall.
The hospital rooms will have a focus on natural light and open space, because a bright and cheerful setting can help children recover, said Ballantine. She added that there will be room set aside for families to relax, separate from the stress of a medical environment.
The new hospital cost $289 million, at a time when other children’s hospitals are not doing as well. Last year, the Children’s Hospital Association asked the Biden administration for relief funding to help a financially strained pediatric health care system. However, the financial outlook for CHOP is good, according to Moody’s Investors Service, which gave the institution one of its top ratings last June. Moody’s cited CHOP’s strong market position and brand as one of the reasons behind the high rating, and noted that the rating could go up as CHOP expands its reach.
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