Construction is underway on the new $50 million Memorial Children’s Hospital in South Bend, which will include a feature hospital leaders say can’t be found anywhere else in the nation. The project is led by Beacon Health System, the nonprofit parent of Memorial Hospital and Elkhart General Hospital, and supported through $10 million in donations. The 100,000 square-foot expansion is set to open in 2017 and plans call for hematology/oncology and pediatric intensive care services, as well as a roof garden and family lounge.

Memorial Hospital Women’s and Children’s Services Executive Director Michaeleen Conlee tells Inside INdiana Business the newborn intensive care unit "couplet care" rooms will allow moms close contact with their babies as early as 22 weeks gestation fresh out of delivery.

Pediatric care at Memorial has grown to this point from its initial form as a pediatrics unit. It was officially designated as a children’s hospital by the National Association of Children’s Hospitals and Related Institutions in 2004.

Beacon Health System says the new facility will be attractive to talent and feature a number of pediatric specialists and subspecialists will be located at the facility, including:

  • neonatology
  • pediatric hematology/oncology
  • pulmonology
  • infectious disease
  • sleep medicine
  • behavioral and developmental pediatrics
  • cardiology
  • neurology
  • clinical psychology
  • endocrinology
  • gastroenterology
  • pediatrics hospitalists and intensivists

Beacon Chief Executive Officer Kreg Gruber says "every inch of the new facility was carefully thought through by our staff. With patients and families at the center of all we do, each new space was designed to provide the safest and most comfortable environment, which provides the best possible service to families and children. Most people don’t realize just how important these services are until they need this level of care themselves."

Memorial Children’s serves patients in a 15 county-area in Indiana and Michigan.

Memorial Hospital Women’s and Children’s Services Executive Director Michaeleen Conlee says the newborn intensive care unit will include a first-of-its-kind feature.