By Rachel Leber
GAINESVILLE, Fla. — A ribbon-cutting was held at the University of Florida (UF) Health Cancer Center’s Circle of Hope on Nov 2. Hundreds gathered to hear the dedication for the new UF Health Heart and Vascular Hospital and the new UF Health Neuromedicine Hospital that will meet an increasing need for specialized care.
The new 500,000-square-foot complex had a budget of $425 million. Madison, Wis.-headquartered Flad & Associates was the architect on the project, and the hospital selected Skanska USA, headquartered in Parsippany-Troy Hills, N.J., to do the construction work. The building’s engineering firm was Affiliated Engineers Inc. from its local Gainesville office. UF Health began construction of the building in January of 2015.
The new complex has 216 private patient rooms, with the UF Health Heart and Vascular Hospital occupying the south wing of the building that includes 120 of the total beds count. The UF Health Neuromedicine Hospital occupies the north wing of the building and includes 96 beds from the total count.
The first floor of both hospitals will have radiology, presurgery, laboratory and other support services so that patients will be able to have most of their healthcare needs met in one building. Inpatient rooms will be on the upper floors of both hospitals. In addition, the two hospitals will feature multiple hybrid operating rooms with the capability of adapting to rapidly changing medical technology.
The two hospitals combined have five general and three hybrid heart and vascular operating rooms. Of the seven neuromedicine operating rooms, two have MRI scanners attached to the room, which allow doctors to safely perform an MRI scan mid-surgery without having to transport patients to a new suite.
The new facility was built with patient comfort in mind, according to Rossana Passaniti, UF Health media relations coordinator in a recent interview with the Alligator, a local news source. Artwork by local Gainesville artists hangs on the walls of both hospitals, and a calming color scheme and warm lighting were chosen to reflect nature, according to Passaniti.
Patients from UF Health Shands Hospital in neurological and cardiological intensive-care units will be moved to the new hospitals on Dec. 10, and new patients can be seen starting on Dec. 11.