Why Sick Kids Can't Wait

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American Family Children's Hospital NICU manager Angie Baker

Nurse manager Angie Baker talks about what a NICU is and why Madison needs it. Read more

Why Sick Kids Can't Wait

World-class pediatric health care truly arrived when American Family Children's Hospital opened its doors in 2007.

Since then, nearly 600,000 patient visits have taken place in this beautiful hospital, the emergency room and at our pediatric clinics.

Built without any state taxpayer dollars and operating without any state subsidy, American Family Children's Hospital has admitted thousands of kids from every corner of Wisconsin and nearly every state.

American Family Children's Hospital is a beacon in the night - always there when a child needs medical care.

Whether that child is from Madison, Wisconsin, or halfway across the country, American Family Children's Hospital provides state-of-the-art pediatric care in this truly remarkable facility.

From cardiology to cancer, more than 150 pediatric specialists and surgeons care for the most vulnerable, acutely ill children.

We are a resource not only for these patients and families, but also the many physicians and hospitals who seek our help in treating children with the most complex medical conditions.

We Built It and They Came

American Family Children's Hospital Weekday Occupancy chart

Demand is growing rapidly at American Family Children’s Hospital.

To date, we have never turned a child away, but future projections show that our current 61-bed capacity cannot accommodate every child and family that will need our help. Already, we must care for some pediatric patients in a seven-bed overflow unit at UW Hospital and Clinics.

By 2015, our inpatient volume is expected to be nearly 50 percent more than the day we opened our doors in 2007. Moreover, the kids we care for are sicker and require even higher capability levels of rooms and equipment.

Big Dreams for Little Patients

Families need to know that there will always be room at American Family Children’s Hospital for their child or grandchild if they are faced with a medical challenge. Moreover, they want the convenience of having the most advanced level of care provided in a supportive environment that is close to home.

The following components are needed to accommodate the growing demand and provide the highest level of medical and surgical care:

  • Twenty-six new acute care beds. Fourteen beds will comprise a Surgical/High Acuity Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), making it possible for the very sickest infants to have a new chance at life; 12 beds will comprise an expansion of our Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU). The Surgical NICU will complement, not duplicate, existing NICUs at birthing hospitals in Madison and throughout the region.
  • A  Pediatric Hybrid Cardiac Catheterization/Operating Room/Interventional Radiology Laboratory, to ensure that children needing invasive heart and radiological procedures now performed at the adult UW Hospital will instead have them performed exclusively in the Children’s Hospital in a unit specially designed and dedicated to pediatric care. 
  • A Pediatric Imaging Suite where children - and only children - will receive X-ray/imaging procedures with state of the art, low-dose radiation technology.  This will be a full- service imaging suite for children requiring MRI, CT, ultrasound and fluoroscopy services.
  • Opening two more pediatric operating rooms by purchasing the necessary surgical equipment. Pediatric surgery volume has increased by 35 percent since 2007 and is projected to keep growing rapidly.

The Time to Act is Now

In 2007, Wisconsin celebrated the grand opening of a world-class pediatric health care facility unlike any other - American Family Children’s Hospital. We knew then that the need was great. Today, that need has grown much faster than expected, and we must respond.

Simply put, sick kids can’t wait.

Wisconsin has never shied away from a challenge, especially one that champions the needs of its most vulnerable members: our children and grandchildren. We hope you will join with us in taking the dream of this magnificent facility to the next exciting stage.