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Vision and Voice

Strengthening Our Foundation: Investing in UVA Health University Medical Center

Over the past year, UVA Health's Strategic Plan has been a hot topic of discussion, along with the advancements happening across the health system that support our team members and, ultimately, improve patient care. While headlines often highlight the grand openings and partnerships, there's a quieter but equally crucial side to our story — our internal investments to strengthen the foundation of UVA Health University Medical Center.

In 2023, we took significant steps to modernize our operations and enhance our infrastructure. In January, we expanded the Neuro Rehabilitation program, improving patient care and therapy. By August, the UVA Augusta Retail Pharmacy had expanded to a larger space at Augusta Medical Park, making it more accessible on the 1st floor. September saw the growth of the Transplant Clinic in the West Complex, adding 12 exam rooms, an echo room, and 5 infusion bays.

November marked the opening of the UVA Family Medicine Stoney Creek pharmacy, addressing medication access barriers in Nelson County. Around that time, the Stem Cell Transplant Clinic at UVA Emily Couric Clinical Cancer Center expanded, providing more exam rooms and infusion bays. The Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) Lab at North Fork Research Park also underwent a significant expansion, improving the quality and automation of our testing results. We also introduced two new Mohs special procedure rooms in Dermatology at the UVA Health Primary Care Center and expanded the Pain Management Center.

I’m sharing all of this not just to pat ourselves on the back but to underline our ongoing commitment to investing in the needs of our teams — so we can ultimately improve access to services for our patients. Looking ahead to 2024 and early 2025, we have several exciting projects planned, including:

  • Pediatric Expansion: We will begin a two-phase renovation to increase NICU rooms on 8 North from four to 12 rooms, increase staffing of the PICU from 22 to 25 beds, and expand regional pediatric behavioral medicine to improve access to, and coordination of, multiple modalities of care.
  • MRI Expansion in University Hospital: Adding new MRI and prep/recovery rooms in Radiology.
  • Plastic Surgery-Davis Wing Expansion: Expanding and renovating the clinic to increase the number of Plastic Surgery Exam Rooms.
  • New Cancer Center Infusion and Clinic Expansion at Primary and Specialty Care Pantops: Expanding Infusion Treatment by 25,000 square feet.
  • 6th Street Clinic: Adding a 2,000-square-foot neighborhood primary care clinic as part of a new community housing project.
  • LASIK treatment and Eye Clinic Expansion in April 2024: Enhancing our eye clinic diagnostic and treatment capabilities and adding two clinic rooms.
  • UVA Cancer Center Augusta, Fishersville: Expanding the Augusta Oncology Center floor by 8,000 square feet.
  • Zions Crossroads Clinic: Improving patient privacy and comfort in the mammography procedural area and changing rooms, as well as adding a team member workstation. 12,000 square feet of shelled space is being built out to make way for 27 new exam rooms for specialty clinics.
  • Central Pharmacy Distribution Center: Renovated identified space to improve pharmacy operational efficiency and supply distribution, while making medications more accessible to patients.
  • Mother and Baby Unit Expansion: UVA Health Obstetrics and Gynecology’s newly expanded Mother and Baby Unit opened last week, increasing capacity from 23 beds to 30 beds.
The new Mother and Baby Unit grand opening was especially festive last week amidst Valentine's Celebrations. See more photos in Medicine in Motion.

As we move forward on these projects, our goal remains steadfast – to provide exceptional care, expand our services, and create environments that prioritize the well-being of our patients and support our team members. Thank you for your commitment to our local community and trust in our vision for the future.

I hope you’ll share your thoughts on other potential opportunities to improve our environment through the Be Heard Suggestion Box. We're most successful when we work and grow as ONE UVA Health team.

Take care and be well,