If you live south of the city, getting to Dayton Children’s Hospital can be a challenge. Specifically, if you have children, the whole process of driving downtown, parking, and navigating the numerous wings and buildings can be completely overwhelming. So, we were pleased to learn that Dayton Children’s Hospital had recently opened a facility in Springboro.
We wanted to learn more, so we recently talked with Cindy Burger, Vice President for Patient and Family Experience at Dayton Children’s, who led the design team for the Springboro project. Here are some highlights from that conversation:
We did extensive research about the demographics of our region and found one of the largest concentration of children in our area are located in the southern suburbs of Dayton/northern Cincinnati suburbs. We also learned the families in this area closely identified with Dayton Children’s and really wanted our pediatric specialists to be close and convenient.
As part of our Destination 2020 plan to be closer to home for our families, we knew we needed to put as many of our services in this area as we could to best serve these families. Considering we already had an urgent care, sports medicine, rehabilitation, lab and imaging services there, it seemed a natural spot to expand.
What services will the Springboro facility offer?
Right now, Dayton Children’s south campus (as we are now calling the Springboro location) offers access to more than a dozen pediatric specialists in areas such as orthopaedics, sports medicine, rehabilitation, cardiology, endocrinology, neurology, gastroenterology, ENT specialists — almost any service a child would need is available at our specialty care center on the south campus.
In addition, the pediatric emergency department is now open to care for the specific needs of children in case of sudden illness or severe injury… because kids are not just little adults. Their growing bodies react differently to illness and injury, medications and treatments. Our pediatric emergency specialists are specifically trained in these differences to provide the very best care for even the most severe cases.
The south campus also offers a pharmacy, lab (for blood testing), imaging (like x-rays, CT or MRI scans) and convenient parking. Come August, a surgery center will also open — this will be for those outpatient surgeries that do not require admission to the hospital after the procedure.
What are some examples of innovation and technology that set this location apart?
While we do have cool tools and tech, the most important features are actually the people who work there. You will not find a more dedicated staff to not only taking care of the medical needs of a child, but the mental and emotional needs of the whole family. We treat each child as if they were our own, and that makes all the difference.
All of our doctors, nurses, technicians and specialists are exceptional at what they do! They are truly the difference in going above and beyond for our kids. Of particular mention, Dr. Thomas Krzmarzick is the medical director of the emergency department and a true master of caring for children and families in some of the most trying times of their lives.
However, this expansion does focus on making the most of innovation and technology to advance pediatric care. A great example can be seen in the tools now is use in the orthopaedics, sports medicine and rehab areas, including:
- The GaitRite lab to ensure a child is walking and running efficiently – a child simply walks or runs down the mat and it measures cadence, walking speed, right and left step and stride lengths, and right and left step times.
- Biodex machine to measure strength, speed and range of motion – This machine can isolate muscle groups and test how much they can handle – identifying potential weaknesses that may not be immediately noticeable. This can allow therapists to target their treatments to build strength in weaker areas to help overall strength and health.
- Sportsmetrics, an ACL injury prevention program – ACL injuries (a ligament in the knee) are on the rise, especially among girls. This program is designed to help athletes avoid non-contact ACL injuries and improve overall performance. The neuromuscular training teaches athletes to “preprogram” safer movement patterns that can reduce the risk of injury during activities.
- Outdoor sports field, which provides a wide open space to actually work on full out drills that an athlete would do on the real life surface they would encounter.
- Climbing wall and swing to enhance sensory systems, a fun, kid-friendly way to approach building muscle and motor skills. After climbing a rock wall, many kids feel like they could do anything!
In addition, we are using the latest in technology to enhance service and communication. We use a bar code and tube system that codes and delivers medication from the pharmacy to the emergency department that ensures the highest level of accuracy and safety. We also have a communication system called Vocera which kids have called our Star Trek buttons! Worn like a mini walkie-talkie at the neck, it allows a nurse to have instant communication to the rest of the staff – incredibly helpful in fast paced, mobile world of health care.
Finally, in imaging and lab work, we have Image Right software that reduces radiation to the growing body. It calculates the lowest amount of radiation necessary to achieve a quality scan and limits the size of the exposure to the smallest area possible. In the lab, we have smaller needles and a staff accomplished in working with small veins and used to distracting children to make the process smoother.
Two new departments worth mentioning: the emergency department and the surgery center
The ED opened January 3, 2017. It’s open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It offers a 16 rooms, including a trauma bay, procedure rooms for stitches and splinting, even a decontamination room. Trauma credentialed pediatric emergency medicine doctors are on staff – because almost everything is different in medicine for a child. Dayton Children’s emergency departments also have dedicated child life specialists, trained to engage children and distract them in a situation that may make them nervous or uncomfortable. By using “tickle bugs,” lights or even just tablets, these specialists know how to turn fear into fun. If necessary, patients can be transferred to surgery or an inpatient unit at the main campus in our mobile intensive care units.
The surgery center will open this August. It will be for those outpatient surgeries that don’t usually require a hospital stay afterward — procedures like as tonsil removal, ear tubes, eye surgeries, urologic procedures and orthopaedic procedures for setting broken or dislocated bones. It will be staffed by pediatric trained surgeons and anesthesiologists; these specialists have extra years of training to care for the special needs of children.
The South Dayton campus is undoubtedly a huge asset to Greater Cincinnati and Dayton. To learn more, please visit Dayton Children’s website.