Utah’s Primary Children’s Medical Center expanding
Health • Building will open up hospital space for beds and surgery.
Published: September 6, 2012 03:53PM
Updated: December 25, 2012 11:31PM
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Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune Aumberlee Davis, a 10-year-old undergoing treatment for leukemia, takes the first scoop of dirt at the groundbreaking ceremony for the new George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Outpatient Services Building on Thursday.

Primary Children’s Medical Center broke ground Thursday on a new outpatient facility that will ease crowding and open up bed space at the main hospital building.

The six-story George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Outpatient Services building will hold 41 specialty clinics, treating conditions from diabetes to spina bifida, when it opens in late 2014.

The building will be across the street from the main hospital on the west side of Mario Capecchi Drive. A sky bridge will connect the two facilities. This is the first major expansion of the hospital in 22 years, since its move from the Avenues neighborhood in Salt Lake City.

Some of the hospital’s departments, such as its pharmacy and lab, have remained the same size for decades. The new building will open up rooms for additional beds, operating space and other areas at the main facility.

A new 900-stall parking garage will ease families’ access to the new structure. Patients will be processed through the clinics more efficiently.

“It really is an opportunity to address the increasing complexity of health care needs of our population,” said Katy Welkie, Primary Children’s CEO. “The way we are designing the building, it allows us to pull teams together.”

A major contribution from the Eccles Foundation launched the $20 million campaign to pay for the new building and future facilities. The building is the first phase of a plan that will include another building and inpatient tower in years ahead.

jlyon@sltrib.com