Children's Home plans to expand hospital wing

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The Children's Home of Pittsburgh & Lemieux Family Center is making plans for a new addition.

Representatives from the home filed a contract Tuesday with the construction firm PJ Dick for a west wing addition. The contract was filed with the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County.

Jennifer March, director of external affairs for the home, said the addition will be made to the Pediatric Specialty Hospital. The current 28-bed facility is described on the Home's website as a transitional "bridge" for families between other hospitals and their homes.

Ms. March said the west wing addition will create space for 14 new patient beds.

Beds are consistently at 80 percent capacity, she said.

"There is a real need in the community," Ms. March said. "We never want to end up with children on a waiting list who can't secure the services they need."

The new patient rooms will accommodate families to reside with admitted children. Rooms will be large enough for two parents to stay overnight with their child. The average length of stay for families at the hospital is 17 days.

The Pediatric Specialty Hospital is one of three programs at the home, located at 5324 Penn Ave. The home also has an adoption program and Child's Way, a day care for children with special medical needs. The Lemieux Family Center, which joined the home in 2007, is also located at the Penn Avenue location.

PJ Dick has worked with the home before, including construction of a 64,000-square-foot facility completed in 2007 and renovations in 2011.

Ms. March said it will be about three to four weeks before any building activity on the new wing begins.


Lauren Lindstrom: llindstrom@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1964.

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