Upstate News

February 14, 2006
Darryl Geddes 315 464-4828

Bristol-Myers Squibb pledges $1 million to Golisano Children’s Hospital

SYRACUSE, N.Y. – Bristol-Myers Squibb, a leading international pharmaceutical company with laboratories and manufacturing facilities in Syracuse, will contribute $1 million to the Golisano Children’s Hospital at University Hospital, SUNY Upstate Medical University and Bristol-Myers Squibb officials announced today.

The Bristol-Myers Squibb gift is the largest corporate philanthropic contribution in the history of SUNY Upstate. In recognition of the gift, the 11th floor tree house lobby, a key highlight of the Golisano Children’s Hospital, will be named the Bristol-Myers Squibb 11th Floor Treehouse Lobby.

“This is a significant day for SUNY Upstate and Central New York, when one of our community’s corporate leaders steps forward and pledges such remarkable support for this project that will benefit children and families across our region,” said SUNY Upstate President Gregory L. Eastwood, M.D. “Bristol-Myers Squibb has been a longtime advocate of and contributor to our mission of research, education and patient care, and we are especially grateful for its support today.”

Bristol-Myers Squibb’s contribution to the children’s hospital makes perfect sense, said Bristol-Myers Squibb Senior Director of Syracuse Operations Ken Dauria. “Bristol-Myers Squibb’s mission is dedicated to extending and enhancing life through the discovery of new medicines and enhancing health care systems and services throughout the globe, so helping our children and families here at home in Central New York was a perfect fit with our mission.

“We believe that the children of Central New York deserve a hospital dedicated to their needs, and we believe that this will be an exciting place for physicians to work, conduct research and serve our community.”

Dauria also noted that the presence of a children’s hospital in Central New York can help in the recruitment of talented individuals from all across the country to work at Bristol and other employers. “It says we are a caring and committed community, and it speaks directly to the quality of life we want to offer our neighbors,” he said.

The gift from Bristol-Myers Squibb will go to name the children’s hospital tree house lobby, which is a key design feature of the children’s hospital. Parents and children will enter the tree house lobby when they exit the elevator on the 11th floor. The lobby will be a large area featuring a café, lounges, play areas, a gift shop and ample seating areas for relaxing away from the patient’s bedside.

“This space is just as important as the clinical space where we will care for kids,” said Thomas Welch, M.D., chairman of the Department of Pediatrics. “The tree house lobby is a place where families and children will go for a break from the clinical setting. We hope to create a park-like atmosphere just steps away from the hospital bed. This contribution from Bristol-Myers Squibb will ensure that we have the best space possible.”

The Bristol-Myers Squibb gift brings the total of the community-wide giving campaign to $21.5 million. The naming gift for the children’s hospital was announced in November when B. Thomas Golisano of Pittsford, N.Y., philanthropist and founder and chairman of Paychex Inc., pledged $6 million to the children’s hospital campaign.

“We are overwhelmed by the continued support from the community for this project,” said Mary Ann Shaw, chair of the children’s hospital campaign committee. “On behalf of everyone who has been involved in the children’s hospital campaign, I’d like to thank our local Bristol-Myers Squibb officials for working so hard with their corporate headquarters over the last year and a half to obtain this tremendous gift. It certainly puts the exclamation point on this campaign.”

Over the last two decades, Bristol-Myers Squibb has contributed nearly $900,000 to SUNY Upstate projects and programs, including cancer research, the Joslin Diabetes Center, the thoracic surgery program and the Central New York Children’s Miracle Network.

The Central New York Children’s Hospital increases the amount of dedicated space to pediatric medicine at University Hospital from 18,000 square feet to 87,000. It will feature 70 private patient rooms with enough space for a pullout sofa or bed to accommodate parents who want to stay the night in their child’s room. There will also be separate family sleep quarters. Nursing stations will be located between each room to put nurses in closer proximity to patients when not providing patient care. A 15-bed pediatric intensive care unit will be included in the children’s hospital. Lighting specifications have been redesigned to provide patients with warmer, more natural light to replace the glow of fluorescent fixtures.

Other design highlights of the children’s hospital include: a pediatric meditation space, breast-feeding rooms, family shower area, age appropriate play spaces, family activity rooms, and private conference and consult rooms to accommodate physician and family discussions.

A family resource center will serve as a library or learning center where families can go to get more information on their child’s illness and research other issues. The center will also make available to families and patients, videos, DVDs, games and other items, such as light reading materials.

The Golisano Children’s Hospital will comprise the top two floors of University Hospital’s vertical expansion, which includes new patient care floors for cardiovascular, neurosurgery and oncology services. Groundbreaking for the vertical expansion is set for this fall with an opening in 2009.

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