PVH to give community a sneak peek inside new expansion

Teddy Bear Hospital and Community Open House planned for Feb. 11
Feb. 2, 2017

FORT COLLINS, Colo. (Feb. 2, 2017) – As crews are putting the finishing touches on the expansion project at Poudre Valley Hospital, the staff inside is getting ready for the new wing’s big debut.

ER doctor stitches up a teddy bear
Emergency physician Jamie Teumer gives stitches to a tiny teddy bear as Johann Doetsch watches at the 2015 Teddy Bear Hospital at the UCHealth Emergency Room on Harmony Road in Fort Collins. More than 450 children brought in their stuffed animals and dolls to be cared for by UCHealth emergency staff during the event.

The three-story, 185,000-square-foot expansion, which is set to open at the end of February, features an expanded emergency department, a state-of-the-art laboratory, an orthopedics unit, a retail pharmacy and a rooftop helipad.

At two events on Feb. 11, the community will get a chance to look inside the new space and learn more about the services that will be offered there.

“This project has been many years in the making. I am excited for the community to see what’s inside and learn more about how this facility is going to improve the care we are able to provide as well as the patient experience,” said Kevin Unger, the hospital’s president and CEO.

The morning will kick off with the Teddy Bear Hospital event, which will be held from 9 a.m. until noon. The Community Open House will be held from 1-3 p.m.

At Teddy Bear Hospital, kids will get a little TLC for their favorite stuffed animals or dolls. Parents and children alike will be able to learn about being healthy, staying safe and preventing injuries as well.

“Emergency Room visits can be very scary for children and their families since many don’t know what to expect,” said Kerry Borrego, UCHealth’s trauma program outreach coordinator. “This is a great opportunity to bring children through the ER and simulate what a visit might be like for the child – but their stuffed animal is the patient instead.”

At the Teddy Bear Hospital event, UCHealth ER staff will bandage, suture and even X-ray the “patient” based on its injuries or illnesses reported to them by the child.

“Participating in this fun event can help decrease the anxiety and fear a child might have should they need to come to the ER as a patient themselves in the future,” Borrego said.

Emergency Physicians of the Rockies is giving mini teddy bears away to the first 250 young guests. There also will be different community programs hosting information and fun events, and an ambulance will be on site for the children to tour.

The Community Open House event is geared for the general public and will include an expanded tour of the whole facility.

Much of the space on the first floor is dedicated to the new emergency department, which is significantly larger: 55,543 square feet compared to the current 16,820 square feet. The new space can accommodate up to 64 beds compared to 28 in the current ER. The current space was built to treat 25,000 patients per year, but in 2016, approximately 53,000 patients were cared for there. The new space anticipates future growth of the community and can care for up to 100,000 patients annually.

On the lower level is a new laboratory, which was designed to be more efficient and able to handle higher volumes through automated lines for both the microbiology and chemistry areas. It features state-of-the-art equipment that will bring expanded services to northern Colorado and a dedicated Biosafety Level Three laboratory space that is capable of handling highly infectious bacteria – like tuberculosis.

On the second level, the new orthopedic unit has large rooms with natural light and a rehabilitation gym that gives patients an area to improve their mobility and health without the feel of being in a hospital.

UCHealth’s Clinical Education and Innovation Center staff will be on hand at the Community Open House with training mannequins mocked up as patients so visitors can see how the mannequins help prepare staff for real-life situations. Health care experts also will be available to answer questions about the laboratory and new retail pharmacy, mental health and sexual assault nurse examiner rooms in the ER, the helipad, MRI and other aspects of the new space.


About UCHealth

UCHealth is an innovative, nonprofit health system that delivers the highest quality medical care with an excellent patient experience.  UCHealth combines Memorial Hospital, Poudre Valley Hospital, Medical Center of the Rockies, UCHealth Medical Group, Broomfield Hospital, Grandview Hospital and University of Colorado Hospital into an organization dedicated to health and providing unmatched patient care in the Rocky Mountain West. With more than 100 clinic locations, UCHealth pushes the boundaries of medicine, providing advanced treatments and clinical trials and improving health through innovation.

Where to go

WHAT: The community is invited to two upcoming events to get a sneak peek of Poudre Valley Hospital’s new wing, which includes a new emergency department.

  • Teddy Bear Hospital, 9-noon Feb. 11.
  • Community Open House, 1-3 p.m. Feb. 11.

WHERE: Poudre Valley Hospital, 1024 S. Lemay Ave., Fort Collins.

DETAILS: Both events are free. Signs will be posted to direct attendees to event parking.

About the author

Kelly Tracer is a media relations specialist at UCHealth, based in northern Colorado. For nearly 20 years, she worked as a newspaper reporter, editor and designer before diving into the world of health care communications.

She believes there is an amazing story inside everyone and considers it an honor to get to meet and work with so many extraordinary people – patients, families, providers, volunteers and staff – every day. She is also fascinated by health care innovation and programs that empower and inspire people and families to live healthier lives.

A native of Nebraska, Kelly received a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln. She and her husband have two children and enjoy paddle boarding all summer and skiing all winter.