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Children’s Hospital will use $1M grant to expand cardiac ICU |

Children’s Hospital will use $1M grant to expand cardiac ICU

Jeff Himler
| Thursday, December 28, 2017 12:48 p.m

Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC will nearly triple the size of its cardiac intensive care unit with the help of a $1 million grant from the state Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program.

The hospital plans to expand the unit’s capacity from 12 beds to 33 beds and will cover the remainder of the estimated $3 million cost. Construction is expected to take six months, beginning in February.

The unit provides critical cardiac care to infants and children with congenital or acquired heart disease and adults with congenital heart disease. Spokesman Marc Lukasiak said the hospital’s critical care bed occupancy has increased more than 50 percent in the last five years.

“This is an essential expansion for our world class congenital heart program that will enable our cardiac team to better meet the needs of patients and their families,” Christopher Gessner, the hospital’s president, said in a news release.

The Heart Institute at Children’s has a top-ranked pediatric cardiothoracic surgery program offering procedures including transplantation. It’s one of 11 programs in the country to receive a three-star rating from the Society of Thoracic Surgeons, in 2012-2016.

A report released in June by the Pennsylvania Health Care Cost Containment Council indicated Children’s had a 4.7 percent mortality rate, the lowest in the state, for neonatal heart surgery in 2012-2015 and tied for the lowest mortality rate in eight other procedures.

The Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program provides funding for acquisition and construction of economic, cultural, civic, recreational and historical improvement projects that have a regional impact and help create or maintain jobs and generate economic activity.

Jeff Himler is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 724-836-6622, or via Twitter @jhimler_news.

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