Le Bonheur Children's Hospital expansion rendering

Le Bonheur Children's Hospital finishing up final weeks of $95 million critical care expansion

March 13, 2024
by John R. Fischer, Senior Reporter
Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital, in Memphis, has set to work on the final phase of its $95 million expansion, which will be its largest since opening in 2010 and will provide patients with a four-story facility for critical care services that will include a newly combined MR imaging and cardiac catheterization laboratory.

“We'll be able to do cardiac catheterizations without any exposure to radiation, which is a major deal for our pediatric patients. It limits potential risks for radiation problems in the future, like cancer," Dr. Jason Johnson told local news outlet Commercial Appeal.

The catheterization lab will be one of three in the hospital, which initiated the expansion project to keep up with rising demands. The new 128,000-square-foot building will also include a 31-bed cardiovascular unit, an expanded surgery recovery unit, and 14 new NICU beds in addition to the current 60. Le Bonheur Children’s says that NICU rates are increasing nationally and regionally due to their having the highest quality of care for the most acute care and the most complex medical cases.

An additional 12 beds will be converted to critical care as well, allowing children to be transferred faster and more easily. The new cardiac ICU rooms will be larger than average hospital rooms to provide extra space for medical interventions, and can be immediately converted into operating rooms when necessary. While the hospitals prefer to take young patients to a standard operating room, the conversion design will allow them to treat those who are too sick or fragile to move. Because of the larger size, equipment like cardiac pulmonary bypass machines can also be brought in for these patients.

Standard ORs will include high-res cameras to provide up-close views of cardiac procedures. A monitor room will also enable doctors and hospitals worldwide to look in on operations, and several other monitors will provide multiple views that can be controlled.

“We’re full a lot of the time, and we definitely need the space to provide great care for the patients that we’re privileged to serve,” Trey Eubanks, the new president, told WREG-TV/News Channel 3.

Construction on new surgical, diagnostic, and patient rooms is expected to be completed in April.

Le Bonheur plans to hold a celebration event on May 8 to celebrate the completion of construction.