Children's Health

Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital Celebrates 10 years of the Big Blue Building on the Medical Mile

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., January 11, 2021 – Spectrum Health Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital is excited to celebrate 10 years of the iconic blue building being a beacon of hope and a world-renowned landmark on the Medical Mile.  The 14-story, $286 million Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital as we know it today, opened on January 11, 2011, with the help of more than $103 million in contributions from more than 6,000 donors. One of just 220 children’s hospitals in the country, it provides world-class medical and surgical care to infants, children, and adolescents from Michigan, across the country and around the world.

“Thank you to all the dedicated nurses, doctors and staff who work tirelessly to bring award-winning care, comfort and smiles to patients and families from across the region,” said Doug DeVos, Spectrum Health Board Member and son of Helen and Richard.  “It’s hard to believe it has already been 10 years since the tower opened and nearly 30 years since the original Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital opened within Butterworth Hospital.  Mom and Dad always believed that buildings were merely platforms for people to do great things.  We are grateful to all the skilled professionals who make miracles happen every day inside the Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital and are cheering on each child – along with their families – as they receive care there.”

“Those who saw the need years ago for specialized care for our youngest patients were true visionaries.  Without them, Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital would not be the vital community resource it is today,” said Tina Freese Decker, president & CEO, Spectrum Health.  “I would like to thank our physicians, caregivers, donors, patients and their families and the community as a whole for embracing our mission to advance pediatric care for the children in our region with outstanding programs and services.”

“As a new member of the West Michigan community, I am tremendously proud of the programs and services that have been developed at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital over the past 10 years,” said Hossain Marandi, MD, MBA, FACHE, president, Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital. “Our remarkable team of physicians, nurses and clinical staff provide true world-class care to the communities we serve. I am thrilled to be able to lead the hospital into the future, and to continue building state-of-the-art programs with the inspiration to reach even higher.”

Twenty years before the blue building opened in 2011, the hospital’s roots involved a number of skilled pediatric sub-specialists who joined Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital in the 1970s and 1980s, building capabilities in children’s specialties such as neonatal, cancer and intensive care. Their enthusiasm and expertise created momentum to attract more talent and philanthropy as the building became a reality.

In the summer of 1990, hospital and physician leaders and donors committed $44 million to build the Helen DeVos Women & Children’s Center at Butterworth Hospital. The DeVos Children’s Hospital opened within Butterworth Hospital as a hospital within a hospital in September 1993, bringing together women’s health services, The Birthplace, and a dedicated children’s hospital with a larger neonatal intensive care unit, 24 private patient rooms, including special procedure rooms, a pediatric intensive care floor and areas designed to meet the special needs of families with critically ill and injured children.

Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital is now a 234-bed national referral center and teaching hospital, providing comprehensive clinical care to the children of West Michigan and beyond. It offers advanced pediatric specialty care with more than 300 pediatric physicians who practice in 70 pediatric specialties and programs.  The hospital also provides care close to home in over 50 regional clinics and shares its expertise through Partners in Children’s Health: a collaboration with more than 30 hospitals throughout Michigan. Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital has been recognized as one of nation’ best children’s hospitals, ranking as a top 50 hospital in 8 clinical categories as published by US News and World Report.

By the numbers, Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital:

  • Admits 9,100 children on average annually
  • Handles 56,000 emergency department visits annually
  • Performs 8,700 surgeries each year
  • Cares for more than 1,400 newborns in the Neonatal ICU annually

Spectrum Health System, a not-for-profit, integrated health system, is committed to improving the health and wellness of our communities. We live our mission every day with 31,000 compassionate professionals, 4,600 medical staff experts, 3,300 committed volunteers and a health plan with more than 1 million members. Our talented physicians and caregivers are privileged to offer a full continuum of care and wellness services to our communities through 14 hospitals, including Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, 150 ambulatory sites and telehealth offerings. We pursue health care solutions for today and tomorrow that diversify our offerings. Locally-governed and based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, our health system provided $550 million in community benefit in calendar year 2019. Thanks to the generosity of our communities, we received $37 million in philanthropy to support research, academics, innovation and clinical care. Spectrum Health has been recognized as one of the nation’s 15 Top Health Systems by Truven Health Analytics®, part of IBM Watson HealthTM.

Contact:
Rick Jensen
Media Relations
Office: 616.391.5291
Mobile: 616.706.2608
Email: richard.jensen@spectrumhealth.org