LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 10, 2015) — Shriners from throughout Kentucky, Tennessee, West Virginia, Ohio, and Indiana joined local Shriners Hospital for Children – Lexington representatives, Shriners patients, Lexington Mayor Jim Gray and officials from the University of Kentucky and UK HealthCare in a groundbreaking ceremony to mark the beginning of construction of the new $47 million Shriners Hospitals for Children Medical Center.
The new, state-of-the-art ambulatory facility will be constructed at the University of Kentucky campus across from the UK Albert B. Chandler Hospital and Kentucky Children’s Hospital. Construction will take about 22 months with completion in 2017.
“This is truly a win-win opportunity for Shriners Hospitals for Children, UK HealthCare, and most importantly, the children we treat,” said Douglas E. Maxwell, chairman of the Board of Trustees for Shriners Hospitals for Children network. “I would like to commend this community for making this dream for Shriners Hospital a reality in Lexington, and let me be the first to say that I can’t wait to see how this project unfolds to benefit the children of Kentucky, southern Ohio, West Virginia, Indiana and beyond.”
Shriners Hospital, based in Lexington since 1926 and at the current Richmond Road location since 1955, will own and operated the new ambulatory care center. Shriners will occupy 60,000 square feet of space on the bottom three floors for pediatric orthopaedic care. UK HealthCare will lease the top two floors for ophthalmology services
“Relocating to the UK HealthCare campus will bring together the pediatric orthopaedic expertise Shriners is known for with the top-rated specialty and subspecialty pediatric care at Kentucky Children’s Hospital – a benefit to children with complex conditions,” said Dale Stauss, Imperial Potentate of Shriners International, the fraternity that founded and governs Shriners Hospitals. “Close proximity to a first-rate medical center will also enhance the education and research aspects of our mission.”
Collaboration between Shriners and UK HealthCare is not new. Physician specialists in the fields of pediatric orthopaedics, anesthesia, and rehabilitation serve on the medical staff of both organizations.
“The University of Kentucky and the Lexington Shriners Hospital have long traditions of excellence and commitment when it comes to providing the best in specialty and subspecialty pediatric care,” said Dr. Michael Karpf, executive vice president for health affairs at UK. “We welcome Shriners to the UK campus and look forward to furthering our partnership to enhance pediatric orthopaedic care in Kentucky and beyond.”
The new medical center will include a motion analysis laboratory (one of only three in the state), 20 patient exam rooms, two surgical suites, a rehabilitation gymnasium and therapy rooms, and interactive artwork. Energy efficiency was a priority in the design stage. The building will have geothermal heating and cooling, LED lighting and occupancy sensors, and automated equipment and controls.
An $8 million capital campaign kicked off in October has already raised over $6 million toward the project.