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UPMC Shadyside Dedicates Its New Posner Tower

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PITTSBURGH, October 1, 2003 University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) and community leaders gathered today to thank Henry and Helen Posner and their family for a gift that is transforming patient care at UPMC Shadyside Hospital.

As a symbol of appreciation, the hospitals main building, renamed Posner Tower, was dedicated in a formal ceremony today. The tower is named in memory of the Posners youngest son, Robert Bruce Posner, who died in 2000 while awaiting a liver transplant at UPMC Presbyterian Hospital.

The Posner gift, the largest in UPMC history, is making three major initiatives possible: the renovation of UPMC Shadysides 31-year-old main building, including patient rooms, nursing stations and other facilities; construction of a state-of-the-art surgical center with five operating suites; and the creation of an inpatient center for the relief of pain. The hospitals expansive faade that bears the Posner name leads into a bright, welcoming lobby that symbolizes the patient-centered care awaiting patients and their families in the new building.

The Posner family understands the importance of patient-focused care. To that end, they have given UPMC a tremendous gift to make renovations and develop new facilities, helping to fulfill UPMCs mission to provide patients with the best care, said G. Nicholas Beckwith III, chairman, UPMC board of directors.

According to the Posners, the gift is an expression of the familys appreciation for the care provided to Robert during his illness.

We thank Henry and Helen Posner and their family for their vision and commitment to patient care at UPMC Shadyside, said Jeffrey Romoff, president, UPMC. We are grateful that they understand that the best patient care results from the synergy created by combining the latest medical technologies with a comforting patient environment and a committed, excellent medical team.

The first of the Posner Tower projects to be completed is the surgical center. The five new state-of-the art operating rooms, including an endovascular suite and two minimally invasive surgery rooms, have increased operating capacity at UPMC Shadyside, allowing surgeons to perform approximately 1,900 more surgeries a year. The new suites are fully wired and allow surgeons in remote locations to view surgical procedures, giving patients at UPMC Shadyside instant access to experts from across the UPMC system and throughout the world. All the rooms are equipped with Stentor technology that permits physicians to view digital MRIs, CT scans or X-rays during surgery. The centerpiece of the new operating suites is the endovascular operating room specifically constructed to treat blood vessel problems including deadly aneurysms.

In the second part of the project, 124 patient rooms on four floors of the Posner Tower are in the process of being renovated to create a comfortable healing environment to calm and soothe patients and their families. Each room will be furnished with ergonomically designed equipment that will make it easier for patients to reach telephones, nurse call buttons and television controls.

Nursing stations have been designed to optimize patient care while ensuring patient privacy and confidentiality. The innovative design creates a larger workspace while decreasing noise levels and congestion. A soundproof room adjacent to the nursing station provides a space for physicians and nurses to discuss patient care while protecting patient privacy. The stations are equipped with the latest patient monitoring, health information management and communications systems. All units have been designed to allow for automation and medical teaching. One unit already has been renovated and the others will be completed by July 1.

The Posner Inpatient Pain Center represents a major step forward in UPMCs commitment to managing acute and chronic pain in patients. Through this program, patients recovering from surgery, those with cancer-related pain, as well as other conditions, have access to a multidisciplinary team of specialists who collaborate in evaluating and alleviating pain. A full-range of invasive and non-invasive treatments are offered, including complementary medicine techniques. Although the physical space for this center will not be finished until the end of the year, its operations have already begun, and the program is considered one of the most advanced in the country.

The Posner Tower will greatly benefit patients and their families for generations and stand as a living memorial to the familys generosity, concluded Mr. Beckwith.