Come Tour the New Pediatric Wing at Dixie Regional
By Bailey McMurdie-Parker
The expansion and consolidation project at Intermountain Dixie Regional Medical Center is coming to a close and portions of the 400 East campus will be moving over to join the River Road campus well before the Grand Opening on September 12.
The tower on the southeast side of the River Road campus opens in early June and one of the floors will house the brand new pediatric wing. The public is invited to come tour the new wing and see what services are offered to young community members.
“We’ve been waiting for this for a really long time,” said Jason McPherson, the nurse manager of pediatrics at Dixie Regional. “I am so excited to have the first purpose-built pediatric unit at ever in St. George. We’ve always had buildings that used to be something else. Our areas used to be labor and delivery and then the nursery before it became pediatrics. We’ve always remodeled. This unit is built from the ground up for pediatrics, so it is specific to our patient population which includes adolescents, infants, toddlers and school-age children.”
The new pediatric unit will have 12 inpatient rooms, six of those being flex rooms to share with neuro-specialty rehab when admission numbers are low. “Half of the year we use six or less beds,” McPherson explained. “Summer months into the fall are usually the slowest times. In the winter season, we regularly use eight to 10 beds.”
There will also be four outpatient bays for treatment. Each room will have a pediatric bed and a sofa with a pull-out bed for families to sleep on when they stay with their child. There will be a dedicated play room and a teen space for all patients and family members. “The new theme we have is an animal safari and each room will be color coordinated with different pictures of wildlife,” said McKenzie Reber, a pediatric charge nurse at the hospital.
The current services that pediatrics provides at the 400 East campus will continue at River Road when the wing is open. Those services include emergency care; surgical services; and outpatient physical, occupational and speech therapy and rehabilitation. Dixie Regional partners with Primary Children’s Hospital and hosts their sub-specialist outpatient clinics allowing more care to be delivered locally. Those services include pediatric endocrinology, cardiology, neurology and hematology. The unit also features child-life services, pet therapy and community visitations from people like the local fire and law enforcement agencies.
Because the pediatric wing will be occupied in September when most of the rest of the new buildings will be open to tour for the public, there will be a separate open house for tours on May 30 from 4-6 p.m. Enter through the South Main Entrance at Dixie Regional and follow the signs to the new unit.
“The most important thing about the open house is that it is all about the patient,” said Hannah Horsely, a pediatric charge nurse. “We have children who come into our unit and receive continued care for chronic issues and treatment like chemotherapy which can be traumatic. Coming into a whole new area is going to be very anxiety-provoking for them so we are inviting them and their parents to come tour the space before they have to come and receive treatment.”
The open house will offer a fun scavenger hunt and tours of the new unit to teach people about the services pediatrics provides. “We feel like not a lot of people know about us,” Reber said. “We want people to know we are here to care for their children. I had a little girl tell me last week that she felt like she was staying in a hotel and not a hospital. When she said that I thought, ‘that’s how I want every child to feel. This open house is really to let everyone know that when they come to the hospital, whatever it’s for, they can feel like they are at a hotel rather than a hospital.’”
If you’d like more information about the new pediatric wing at Intermountain Dixie Regional Medical Center or the open house, please call (435) 251-2159.