The twelve months of 2015 were full of expansion and new spaces, patients with remarkable stories and determination, employees whose dedication to their work knows no limits and clinical, scientific and patient experience advancements onto which we will build in 2016.
Below you will find our Top 15 of 2015, listed in no particular order and in no way encompassing every incredible thing that happened this year.
Wow, what a year! Thank you all for being part of the Cincinnati Children’s family.
Please note that each item title is a link to more about that topic.
Cincinnati Walks for Kids celebrated its biggest fundraising year ever on the 10th anniversary of the event thanks to the generous support of friends like you. Walker donations surpassed the record-breaking mark of $1 million in 2015 with the help of a matching gift by Jostin Construction. The walk was held just across the street from our Burnet Campus at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden for the third consecutive year. It was a great day of celebration and support and we are so grateful to the thousands of people who join us each year.
Since 2003, Cincinnati Children’s has served the mental and behavioral health needs of our community’s children at our College Hill Campus and in June, we cut the ribbon on a new 3-story expansion of that facility to better meet the needs of those patients and their families.
The hashtag #MummyScan was trending locally on social media in the early months of 2015 when the medical center agreed to image a 500-year-old child mummy from Peru. The mummy was on display as part of an exhibit at the Cincinnati Museum Center. Results of the virtual autopsy were later revealed during a press conference in March. From the more than 12,000 images taken during the night of the scan, a 3D printed model of the mummy’s skeleton was created. The Cincinnati Children’s images and 3D model are now displayed permanently with the mummy as part of the exhibit.
Heroes are everywhere you look at the hospital. From patients and their family members to the clinical and non-clinical staff providing care and support, we meet heroes every day. One of the most unsung, yet easily recognizable heroes we met in 2015 was AJ Prickel, a nurse in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU). AJ is easy to spot because he wears a different superhero t-shirt each shift. And he wears the shirts because that’s what he wants to be for his patients – a superhero.
Our readers met Jacob Miller in February when we shared a documentary video about his weight loss journey. We told Jacob’s story to increase awareness, understanding and compassion for others who are struggling with weight gain and severe obesity. Since then, the video has been viewed more than 5 million times and Jacob has made new friends and received support from all over the world.
Our Lung Transplant Program performed their first lung transplant in December 2014 and has since performed four more in the last year. Patients are considered for lung transplant when their disease cannot be significantly improved by medical or surgical therapies and when there is a high chance of death, such as cystic fibrosis, pulmonary hypertension and interstitial lung disease.
The Cincinnati Children’s Research Foundation 2015 Annual Report was released in December and is an incredible collection of the most significant research that was published in 2015. A feature of the report is also recognition of six premier scientific achievements of the last five years – discoveries that reflect work with particularly powerful influence upon basic, translational and clinical research — and they set a challenging standard for the work we will pursue in the next five years.
The 2015 calendar year was filled with life-defining moments for Samantha Boling, a 24-year-old lifelong cystic fibrosis patient at Cincinnati Children’s, and we were happy to be with her the day everything changed for the better. In April her then-boyfriend Ty, a musician, proposed to Sam on stage during a 4-day benefit concert that he organized in their hometown to support her treatment. Eleven days after the couple got engaged, Sam learned that a donor match was found for her double lung transplant. Sam is now eight months post-transplant and enjoying every moment of life, including wedding planning!
After three years of construction, our new Clinical Sciences Pavilion was unveiled in June. This 445,000-square-foot research tower is a 15-story symbol of our ongoing commitment to pediatric research and brings our total research space to 1.4 million square feet.
Senior class president Casmir Thornberry would’ve no doubt missed his opportunity to deliver a commencement speech more than 4 years in the making if not for the intervention of his caregivers at Cincinnati Children’s. Three members of the Critical Care Transport Team safely took Casmir from his hospital bed to his graduation ceremony and back, providing all the care necessary for him to be with his classmates on the biggest night of his high school career. Congrats Casmir, and best of luck to all members of the Class of 2015!
Dr. Russell Ware and his team helped lead a multi-institutional clinical trial for hydroxyurea, the only drug approved by the FDA to treat sickle cell disease. Because some children living with sickle cell disease are at an increased risk for stroke, Dr. Ware wanted to find another option other than blood transfusions to treat the disease. This study found that hydroxyurea is as effective as blood transfusions in children to reduce blood flow speeds to the brain, which is a key risk factor for stroke.
In the U.S. News & World Report’s annual Best Children’s Hospital rankings, Cincinnati Children’s was again named #3 in the country for the fifth year in a row and it was also the seventh consecutive year that all 10 of our specialties were ranked in the top 10. One noteworthy move in the rankings was our division of Pulmonology, which was ranked #1 in the country for the first time.
At the end of July, we cut the ribbon on an expansion at Liberty Campus that made it a full-service hospital. Liberty Campus now features a 42-bed inpatient unit on the new fourth floor, an expanded inpatient pharmacy, separate outpatient pharmacy, blood bank, full-service cafeteria, family resource room and expanded medical and surgical specialty clinics – including new cancer services. Plus all of the therapy services, urgent care, emergency care and convenience that patients and families have always appreciated at Liberty Campus!
14. Natasha’s Cinderella Story
Prom is a rite of passage for many high school students and for our patient, Natasha, it was a milestone that she wanted desperately to experience first-hand. But there was a problem – she was in the hospital and wasn’t going to be discharged in time to go. Sometimes, however, determination, preparation and support can move mountains. See what happened this spring when Natasha’s prom night arrived.
On a rainy afternoon in late July, the arrival and installation of the cyclotron – a type of particle accelerator – marked a major milestone in the construction of the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center/UC Health Proton Therapy Center at our Liberty Campus. The cyclotron is the heart of the cancer-fighting proton therapy technology that will be available to patients in late 2016. The giant piece of machinery traveled for more than a month from Germany to reach its home in Liberty Township.