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A softer touch at Shands

New emergency room will open July 1 that’s tailored to children

Four years ago, Dr. Jason Rosenberg raced his 2 year old son Bryan to the emergency room at Shands after the boy had fallen, hit his head and his brain had herniated.

Rosenberg, who specializes in breast cancer reconstruction surgery, called the emergency room on his way and spoke with Dr. Jennifer Light, the medical director of the pediatric emergency room.

She called in a specialized team, and as soon as Rosenberg and Bryan arrived, doctors performed a CT scan and Bryan was wheeled through the operating room doors all within 14 minutes.

“Because of that, he’s standing here,” Rosenberg said, a tear rolling down his cheek. “He’s all right.”

Rosenberg on Wednesday told the story to an audience of Shands and University of Florida officials, major donors and proponents of the new Pediatric Emergency Room at Shands Hospital for Children.

Bryan, who is now 6 and headed into the first grade,Cheap Jerseys china http://www.cheapjerseysshow.com/ used a pair of giant scissors to Gator Chomp the orange and blue ribbon in half, marking the official unveiling of a new $5 million, state of the art, kid friendly treatment center. It will open for business on July 1.

Walking inside the entrance which is only for the pediatric ER visitors are greeted by photographs of four leaping dolphins and two aquariums filled with tropical fish resembling the characters from “Finding Nemo.” The Florida Museum of Natural History is going to provide a rotating sea life exhibit, with an octopus and seahorse slated to be the first guests.

“It’s just little touches like that, that make all the difference,” said Kim Rose, Shands HealthCare’s assistant director of marketing and public relations.

Sea and beach photographs are hung at kid height around the main nurses’ and check in counters. Machines that otherwise might seem scary are decorated in a sea life theme. Portholes are used throughout the space instead of regular windows.

But more importantly, six full time and one part time UF College of Medicine board certified or board eligible pediatric emergency medicine physicians will be on staff to treat children, along with 22 pediatric trained emergency medicine registered nurses and a host of other trained staff. And they will have immediate access to Shands Hospital for Children specialists.

More than a dozen treatment rooms will be capable of handling 24,000 pediatric emergency patients annually up from 14,000 last year in the former pediatric emergency room.

Tim Goldfarb, CEO of Shands HealthCare, said the new emergency room is a tether that ties UF and Shands to the community.

“Everybody knows that a CEO is supposed to be serious, but I can’t help but going woo hoo!” Goldfarb said. “We’ve waited a long time for this.”

Two other people in Gainesville who have waited four years for Wednesday’s ribbon cutting are Horst and Luisa Ferrero. Their 3 year old son Sebastian was undergoing what should have been routine testing for growth hormone stimulation at Shands in October 2007 when he was given more than 10 times the prescribed amount of medicine a dose that was fatal to Sebastian.

The Ferreros established a foundation in their son’s honor and have worked tirelessly with Shands to make sure their tragedy never happens to another family.

“As Sebastian’s mother, I feel that he’s probably pretty proud of what this community is doing, for no other child to go through what he went through,” Luisa Ferrero said.

For the couple, this is simply the beginning of their dream: Their wishes will be fulfilled when a dedicated children’s hospital is built at Shands and the University of Florida. They have raised about $7 million toward that goal so far.

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