The Pavilion at year one

It’s been one year since Penn Medicine celebrated the opening of the Pavilion, designed as a ‘hospital of the future’ with advancements in patient care, collaborative research, and innovative environmental design.

Just one year ago, on October 30, 2021, Penn Medicine celebrated the opening of this groundbreaking architectural feat with the transport of 310 patients across 34th Street from what has come to be known as HUP Main. The transition began with lights turned out in the old ED and the first patients welcomed in the new one.

View through a window of the Penn Med complex through a  window in the new Pavilion.
Embodying Penn Medicine’s ethos of curiosity and continuous learning, leaders and staff in the Pavilion are constantly evaluating how it can become even better.

The Pavilion is the latest jewel in a connected HUP campus which also includes more inpatient rooms and services at HUP Main across the street and outpatient care at the Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine (PCAM). It is the home of several key disciplines: cardiology and cardiac surgery, medical and surgical oncology, neurology and neurosurgery, as well as thoracic, vascular, and transplant surgery, along with a two-floor ED.

Each patient room features a 75-inch “smart” monitor not only for entertainment, but for displaying information about the patient’s care team, any imaging scans or other types of tests they’ve had done, and controls for making the room more comfortable (automated window blinds, thermostat, lighting, etc.). The building features an advanced epilepsy monitoring unit and a human neurophysiology research lab, providing unmatched opportunities to connect neuroscience research and neurological care. The Pavilion’s lobby is graced by a two-story mural by Philadelphia-based artist Odili Donald Odita, and a sculpture by internationally acclaimed artist Maya Lin. The building is the world’s largest project to achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Healthcare Gold Certification, and is also the first U.S. hospital of 1 million square feet or larger to earn LEED Healthcare certification

The Pavilion has helped usher has in a new era for HUP. As the vanguard project of the “One HUP” era, it has helped unite all of the hospital’s campuses—HUP Main, the Pavilion, PCAM, HUP Cedar, Penn Medicine Radnor, and the Interventional Support Center, opened last year, that will ultimately sterilize instruments for all of Penn Medicine’s Philadelphia hospitals and several suburban facilities. Now, staff at all of these locations are united as one under the HUP umbrella.

Kim Olthoff, chief of transplant surgery, reports that the division’s physicians and staff are thrilled that the abdominal transplant patients are all co-located in the ICU and regular floor on 11 Center and 11 City to provide easy transition for patients and families. The next step is to optimize the use of these spaces, including organizing the patient rooms and OR spaces better. “Penn focused a lot on patient satisfaction, now we’re focusing on staff satisfaction and efficiencies,” she says.

“Now care can be more patient-focused because care providers can give their sole attention to the patient in the room,” says neurology nurse Amanda Capicchioni, whose unit had double-occupancy rooms before moving to the Pavilion.

The creative planning toward designing the Pavilion as a “hospital of the future” paid off enormously. This past winter saw the throes of the Omicron surge of COVID-19, which taxed the resources of hospitals everywhere—and the Pavilion was ready. The hospital’s staff tested new emergency response procedures, and adapted spaces to meet quickly changing demands to care for hundreds of COVID patients. For instance, Pavilion staff were able to convert an entire unit to negative pressure rooms, living up to its “future-proof” mission.

Read more at Penn Medicine News.