New York—October 5, 2011
Last year, young patients made nearly 18,000 visits to HSS pediatric rehabilitation therapists. The new Center will allow the hospital to accommodate more than 30,000 patient visits annually. Often, children will rehabilitate at the Center after surgery at HSS, where surgeons perform 2,500 orthopedic surgeries for children and adolescents per year.
“Our physical, occupational and speech therapists build strong relationships with children and adolescents and their families providing emotional support along with rehabilitation therapy,” says Magdalena Oledzka, physical therapist and pediatric rehabilitation section manager. “The new Center is designed to help us create a welcoming, safe and healing environment for our young patients and their families to complement the extraordinary care they receive in therapy.”
The new Center includes:
• a spacious physical therapy gym with brand new equipment including cardiovascular fitness, weight training, and exercise equipment;
• two occupational therapy gyms: one dedicated to provide sensory integration therapy with equipment that facilitates movement in space, such as suspension swings and ladder; and the second one is dedicated to developing fine motor skills;
• an expanded speech therapy suite;
• recreational toys and virtual reality software to improve balance, coordination and motor planning skills;
• an equipment clinic that specializes in wheelchair and mobility needs.
HSS has a long history of caring for a wide range of young patients, from infants with developmental delays to older children with orthopedic sport injuries such as ankle sprains, ACL reconstruction, hip and knee pain and adolescent scoliosis to more complex conditions such as cerebral palsy. Some patients stay with the Center through adulthood.
“In terms of recovery and treatment, it is important to have a space that encourages children and makes them feel at ease. The opening of this new Center shows Hospital for Special Surgery’s commitment to children and their care,” says Dr. Roger Widmann, chief of Pediatric Orthopedic Surgery.
One of the special programs offered to the community by HSS pediatric rehabilitation team is called “Zero to Three Grow with Me.” This seminar is run by physical, occupational and speech therapists, and it is geared towards parents and caregivers of young children who want to learn about child’s normal developmental milestones in areas of gross and fine motor skills, play, and feeding and language development.
“CA Technologies’ generous contribution to our rehabilitation facilities will significantly improve the lives of thousands of children and their families that visit our institution each year,” noted Louis A. Shapiro, president and CEO of Hospital for Special Surgery. “It is an essential component of the new Lerner Children’s Pavilion, which will open in 2012.”
The space, which has many of the same design elements that will be in the Lerner Children’s Pavilion, has been specially designed with the rehabilitation patient and family in mind. The bright blue and green color palette complements a nature-influenced interior, with floor to ceiling windows overlooking the East River. The ceiling incorporates special LED lighting effects with animated objects that lead patients to the main waiting area. These effects display a rotation of playful and customizable images with a blue sky back-drop. The nature theme continues to the terrazzo floor made of recycled glass with a river motif. A curved wall on the exterior of the pediatric gym includes portals of different heights with one-way mirrors, allowing family members to observe a therapy session outside the space without distracting treatment.
“We are fortunate to be part of the pediatric rehabilitation expansion at Hospital for Special Surgery,” said Bill McCracken, chief executive officer, CA Technologies. “Our hope is that this incredible facility will not only help the hospital provide the medical care that is so critical for these youngsters, but that it will also make what can be a difficult experience less stressful for these children and their families.”
The first patients will be treated at the new rehabilitation facility in late October 2011.
For more information, please visit http://www.hss.edu/pediatric-rehab.asp.
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