Network of Care Location Serves as Role Model; Poised for Growth after 5 Years

Children's Hospital Colorado at Parker Adventist Hospital is celebrating its five-year anniversary in February. Since opening in 2004, the location has seen significant growth and is now looking to expand even more.

“When I came on board in 2005, two months later in Jan. 2006, we took the emergency department (ED) to a 24/7 operation, and now, we see more than 12,000 patients in the ED per year,” explained Andrea Ferretti, director, Children's Hospital Colorado at Parker Adventist Hospital.

Children's Hospital Colorado at Parker Adventist Hospital’s ED, staffed with fully trained children’s medical emergency physicians located in a community-based emergency program, allows Children's Hospital Colorado at Parker Adventist Hospital to provide full range of urgent and emergent care cases.

“As a community-located department, we see the same urgent emergent needs, from minor bumps, bruises and falls to medical life-threatening emergencies,” Ferretti noted.

If a child arrives with critical needs, the team works closely with Children’s Colorado on Anschutz Medical Campus to quickly stabilize and transfer the patient to receive the appropriate intensive care unit and level of care at the hospital in Aurora.

Ferretti credits the medical leadership of Drs. Allison Brent and Douglas Scudamore, medical directors of the ED and inpatient unit, for Children's Hospital Colorado at Parker Adventist Hospital ’s community integration. “In addition, the medical team coverage has helped solidify the team and provide the highest level of expertise in an offsite location,” she added.

Today, her team’s goal is to augment the services of community pediatricians and family physicians in the surrounding south metro areas. “Our support provides care-appropriate facilities to maintain their practices and patients’ needs with short-stay medical conditions and offers an avenue for complex consultations and interventions as necessary,” Ferretti noted.

“We are as active in care as possible to eliminate the need for parents to go to our Aurora location, thereby keeping their child close to home,” she added.

The team

Ferretti is exceptionally proud of her team today: 40 percent of the nursing staff hold more than 20 years of pediatric clinical expertise; nine of the initial registered nursing staff have a cumulative 200 years with Children’s. The numbers speak volumes for a Children’s Network of Care (NOC) location that is only five years old.

“When our site opened in Feb. 2004, a significant number of Children’s nurses from our Anchutz Medical Campus location joined our team, and they have worked at Children's Hospital Colorado at Parker Adventist Hospital ever since,” explained Ferretti.

This year, as the location celebrates its five-year anniversary, the team includes 23 registered nurses, eight clinical medical techs, and 11 service specialists.

Patient Volumes:

  • Inpatient Admissions (5-Year Total): 1267 admissions
  • Growth of 48 % from 2004 first-year operation stats
  • Emergency Department Visits (5-Year Total): 40, 750 visits
  • Growth of 33% from first-year operation stats

Laying ground for NOC’s future

As the Network of Care’s original hospital-within-a-hospital, Children's Hospital Colorado at Parker Adventist Hospital has served as the prototype for the future development of Children's Hospital Colorado at Saint Joseph Hospital in downtown Denver . (The pediatric hospital located near downtown Denver opened in Sept. 2007 to provide 24/7 care to patients and families in the local community.)

Children's Hospital Colorado at Saint Joseph Hospital team incorporated valuable lessons learned and design choices from Children's Hospital Colorado at Parker Adventist Hospital .

“We used Children’s and Parker Adventist Hospital ’s relationship as a model to build our partnership and processes with Exempla Saint Joseph Hospital ,” explained director Cindy McConnell. “We also built upon the connection between the ED and the inpatient unit staff and the efficiencies that are gained by looking at the staff and supplies as one department.”

Even Children's Hospital Colorado’s North Campus in Broomfield bore witness to Children's Hospital Colorado at Parker Adventist Hospital ’s community success and kept Parker in mind when planning the new campus.

“Parker’s programs served as a model in developing the North Campus, which in turn has served our patients and families well,” said director Jana Paquet. “Rather than transferring a patient to another facility because of limited hours of operation, as we did at [our former location], we developed a 24/7 program similar to Parker’s.”

The North Campus, which opened in Oct. 2008, offers Children’s continuity of care by offering observation and inpatient admissions up to 72 hours.

“Increasing patient volumes coupled with existing campus space limitations has the executive teams from both Children’s and Parker Adventist Hospital looking at future expansion potential,”said Ferretti, who emphasized that plans are in the initial stages.

Witnessing the North Campus expansion and resulting accomplishments and impact it placed on the metro area, Ferretti’s team is anxious to see what the future will bring. She holds faith that, as the team prepares, they will also look to the Network of Care’s newest locations and consider lessons learned and successes to include in planning.

“It’s a great time for staff and future is so bright for the advancement of care and for the staff providing the care at Children’s,” said Ferretti.