March 15, 2019

In May 2019, the Texas Children’s family will celebrate the one-year anniversary of the opening of Lester and Sue Smith Legacy Tower, one of the greatest achievements in the hospital’s history. We will also pause to remember the life, memory and faithful generosity of the man whose name the tower bears.

Lester Smith, legendary Houston philanthropist and ardent Texas Children’s supporter, has passed. He was 76.

“I was honored to call Lester Smith my friend and I am deeply saddened by the news of his passing,” said Texas Children’s President and CEO Mark Wallace. “He lived his life honorably, and among his greatest joys was his dedication to the service of others. Texas Children’s was lucky enough to be a beneficiary of his unwavering generosity over the years and his commitment to our patients and their families, notably our Cancer Center, was unmatched.”

A native of Wharton, Texas, Smith was a second-generation oil man – a wildcatter who made his mark on the industry, and his fortune, by taking chances others wouldn’t when it came to oil drilling exploration. In 1986, he started Houston-based Smith Energy Company, a provider of oil and gas exploration and production of oil and gas reserves, which he built into a successful multi-state operation. In the 90s, while on a scuba trip to Venezuela, he met the love his life, Sue. The two shared many passions, including competitive ballroom dancing, for which they won two U.S. championships

But following a series of health-related issues, Smith found his highest calling. Drawing from a place of gratitude for the life-saving care he received during battles with cancer, Smith and Sue dedicated more than $150 million to support research at numerous institutions, including Texas Children’s, Baylor College of Medicine and Harris Health System.

A statement from the Lester and Sue Smith Foundation released after his passing said, “his core philosophy, ‘to whom much is given, much is expected,’ drove his life-long passion for giving, touching millions of lives, leaving an indelible mark on our city and world.”

But nowhere will Smith’s legacy and passion for giving be felt more than here at Texas Children’s.

In two fundraising events in 2011 and 2012, Smith and wife, Sue, helped generate more than $41 million in donations to Texas Children’s Cancer Center, with more than $21 million directly donated by The Lester and Sue Smith Foundation.

The 2011 “Evening with a Legend” event honored actor Robert Duvall and showcased a live, on-stage interview by CBS veteran news anchor Bob Schieffer. In February 2012, the “Evening with Disco Legends” event featured performances by disco greats Gloria Gaynor, The Pointer Sisters and Nile Rodgers, and drew over 1,100 supporters – the largest single-evening fundraiser in Houston’s history at the time. By underwriting the event, the Smiths enabled 100 percent of the proceeds to directly fund research at Cancer Center.

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of Lester Smith, whose efforts have helped advance research and care for children with cancer and blood disorders,” said Director of Texas Children’s Cancer and Hematology Centers Dr. Susan Blaney. “Few have had such a transformational impact on our efforts at Texas Children’s Cancer and Hematology Centers to lead the way in research and care of childhood cancer.”

In honor of their unparalleled dedication to help find cures for pediatric cancers, Texas Children’s in 2012 named the Cancer Center outpatient clinic the Lester and Sue Smith Clinic at Texas Children’s Cancer Center.

But it seemed Smith, who was fiercely competitive, wanted an opportunity to outdo himself.

In September 2018, the Smiths chaired the “Legacy of Motown” gala in support of Legacy Tower – Texas Children’s new home for heart, intensive care and surgery – and to support patient care and research at the Cancer Center. The event, underwritten by the Lester and Sue Smith Foundation, raised a record $83,373,119, making it one of the largest single-night fundraisers in the state’s history. The Smith’s personal contribution was an astonishing $50 million.

In honor of that transformational give, Texas Children’s renamed the state-of-the-art, 640,000-square-foot expansion Lester and Sue Smith Legacy Tower.

“Giving to others is our guiding philosophy,” said Smith at the time of the event. “There is nothing more precious than a child, and we hope this gift will help support the incomparable patient care for which the hospital is known. It is truly our honor to leave a legacy of support for generations to come at Texas Children’s.”

The entire Texas Children’s family will forever be grateful for that selflessness and unfailing support.

“Lester’s incredible legacy will live on in the medical advancements, state-of-the-art care and infinite hope for our patients in the tower which now bears his name – Texas Children’s Lester and Sue Smith Legacy Tower,” said Wallace. “My thoughts and heartfelt condolences are with his biggest fan, Sue, as well as his children, Stuart and his wife, Limor, and Shelly and her husband, Brian.”

February 25, 2019

It’s been less than a year since the Lester and Sue Smith Legacy Tower opened its doors for the first time to care for our most critically ill patients at Texas Children’s Medical Center campus. And, in that short period of time, Texas Children’s has made great strides for our patients and their families.

On May 22, 2018, Smith Legacy Tower opened with 45 critically ill patients. Four months later on September 25, Texas Children’s No. 1 ranked Heart Center opened in Smith Legacy Tower to deliver care to 64 patients. Since that historic moment, Texas Children’s critical care, cardiology, surgical and radiology teams have been busy.

To date, Smith Legacy Tower has had 3,870 patient admissions in the pediatric and cardiac intensive care units. More than 5,000 patients have received care at Smith Legacy Tower’s outpatient Heart Center clinics, and over 450 catheterization and 476 MRI procedures have been performed in the new tower.

A total of 2,356 surgeries were completed in Smith Legacy Tower’s state-of-the-art surgical and cardiovascular operating rooms, totaling 9,495 surgical hours. In the first three months of opening the tower’s new helipad, Texas Children’s had 66 helipad landings, allowing for even greater access to Texas Children’s for the sickest patients.

“I don’t know of any other children’s hospital in the country that has the type of experience that Texas Children’s has in bringing all of these elements together,” said Texas Children’s Surgeon-in-Chief Dr. Larry Hollier. “With Legacy Tower providing much larger, more functional spaces for our patients, clinical and surgical teams, we are delivering on our promise to ensure every child receives the right care, at the right time and in the right place.”

West Tower Backfill Project

Following the successful opening of Smith Legacy Tower, construction is now underway to backfill and renovate the patient care spaces on floors 7 and 15 of West Tower that were left vacant from the patient moves.

Part of the West Tower Backfill project involves transitioning patient care services out of the Abercrombie Building which currently serves as Texas Children’s general pediatrics and pediatrics hospital unit. As one of the hospital’s oldest facilities, the smaller spaces and limited technological capabilities have historically presented challenges for providers, clinical care teams, patients and their families.

“When our executive steering committee was formed to look at space planning and space management for our clinical programs, one of our guiding principles was to decrease or eliminate care in Abercrombie,” said Assistant Vice President of Nursing Jennifer Sanders. “As our patients and staff become more dependent on technology, there are challenges due to the age of the facility.”

7 West Tower

As part of the backfill project, 7 West Tower will become a 32-bed dedicated hematology and oncology unit that will include 22 hematology-oncology rooms and 10 bone marrow transplant rooms.

Formerly known as the Progressive Care Unit, several patient rooms had been set up as pods where four patients occupied one room. Construction is underway to reconfigure this space into four private rooms. Renovations will also include a multi-disciplinary work area, larger family lounge and respite areas.

Cancer and hematology patients from other parts of West Tower and Abercrombie will move to 7 West Tower once renovation is completed. The targeted date of completion is September 2019.

15 West Tower

While 15 West Tower used to be Texas Children’s cardiovascular intensive care unit, this space will be redesigned to meet the future growth of our acute care patient population.

By converting this space from critical care to acute care, 15 West Tower will become a 36-bed acute care Pediatric Hospital Medicine (PHM) unit that will include a family lounge and respite spaces. The unit will include four behavioral health rooms, multi-disciplinary work area and space for our PHM providers.

Patients from Abercrombie 5 and 6 will move to 15 West Tower, and during this transition, 7 South Abercrombie will be a “patient ready” floor that will serve as an acute care unit during high patient census. The targeted date of completion is July 2019.

6 West Tower

The last component of the West Tower Backfill project is the reconfiguration of 6 West Tower that will address different patient populations on one floor. Expected to be completed in late 2020, 6 West Tower will become a separate inpatient and outpatient dialysis and pheresis unit. While this floor used to house the administrative offices for critical care physicians, the hospital’s neonatology offices are still located there.

“Collaborating with our facility planning and development partners, our nursing team has played a crucial role in leading the West Tower Backfill project,” said Associate Chief Nursing Officer Jackie Ward. “The patient move from Abercrombie to West Tower will help us meet the future growth of acute care, while enabling our patient care teams to collaborate more efficiently in these new, enhanced spaces. This change will also enhance and improve our patient and staff experience.”

December 3, 2018

A delegation of Texas Children’s physician leadership, executives and experts were recently invited to attend the 6th annual U.S. News & World Report Healthcare of Tomorrow summit in Washington, D.C. There, they met with top hospital leaders, policymakers, insurers, consumer advocates and other industry professionals from across the country to discuss some of the most important topics in health care today.

Texas Children’s had a major presence throughout the event. Not only did we sponsor key discussion sessions, but every attendee had their event credentials on a Texas Children’s-branded lanyard, Additionally, a raffle of four sets of Rudolph’s Pediatrics, the landmark pediatric health care reference, of which Physician-in-Chief Dr. Mark W. Kline is editor-in-chief, was extremely well received at our conference booth.

Kline and Surgeon-in-Chief Dr. Larry Hollier also represented Texas Children’s as featured event speakers.

Taking compassionate care into the global community

In his keynote address, “Global Child Health at the Tipping Point: Lessons from the Field,” Kline stressed that though significant progress has been made to improve child health and mortality rates worldwide, challenges still remain, especially in resource-limited countries. He also said that through increased awareness, partnership and active engagement, those challenges can become opportunities for health care providers to improve the lives of the world’s poorest and least fortunate.

To illustrate this point, Kline highlighted the successes and lessons learned of the Baylor International Pediatric AIDS Initiative (BIPAI) at Texas Children’s Hospital in helping stem the tide of the AIDS pandemic, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. The network, which Kline founded in 1996, has grown from a single pilot HIV clinic in Romania into a comprehensive global health network – the largest HIV/AIDS network in the world – that includes 16 centers and clinics in 14 countries, providing care for hundreds of thousands of children and families, education for nearly 90,000 health care professionals, and research into pediatric health.

Kline also explained how leveraging the BIPAI network’s infrastructure has enabled Texas Children’s to extend its global reach and to offer care for many other diseases and disorders, including pediatric cancer, sickle cell anemia, OB/GYN care, tuberculosis, malaria, malnutrition and other conditions.

“For too long, children have been on the outside looking in, and it’s particularly true for the poor children of the world, who’ve not had the same access to life-saving therapies as American and European children,” Kline said. “The HIV/AIDS pandemic certainly challenged the world’s commitment, and our compassion, for these children. But our success in the fight against HIV/AIDS has opened the door to treatments for a host of other serious diseases that have threatened the health and well-being of children and families for generations.”

Using partnership to drive patient experience

At a discussion session entitled “The New Patient Experience Era: Focusing on the Consumer of Tomorrow,” Hollier and other panel members addressed how enhancing the patient experience can lead to improvements in quality and safety and to increased consumer and caregiver satisfaction.

Hollier discussed the crucial role that partnerships have played in improving patient experience at Texas Children’s.

“We believe strongly that partnerships – with our providers and employees, with our families, and with experts inside and outside of health care – are a critical component of driving an exceptional experience,” Hollier said. “As families’ expectations evolve, we continue to explore more innovative solutions to help us meet them where they are in their care journey, and to ensure they feel supported at every step along the way.”

One such solution was an initiative to improve communication and interaction between providers and patients and families. Partnering with experts at Press Ganey and Academy of Communication, and drawing information from provider and patient/family surveys, we developed a communication training curriculum for caregivers that elevates the level of engagement for families. Providers now feel empowered to manage interactions between both patient and parent, and are better equipped to communicate important information in a way that families will understand.

Texas Children’s also relied on partnership with families during the development of Lester and Sue Smith Legacy Tower. A 20-member Family Advisory Board worked for three years, from initial planning to the go-live date, to ensure that families’ needs were kept at the center of important decisions. Their input was essential for room and facility layouts, in simulation exercises, and for the development of family support resources during the move into the new building.

For Texas Children’s Department of Surgery, partnerships have been integral in enhancing tech processes, which has led to several improvements across the Texas Children’s system, including streamlined and transparent data sharing, consolidation and standardization of our and our providers’ online presence, and more frequent updates and scheduling information for families during surgery through the EASE app.

Hollier also highlighted Texas Children’s recent partnership with Disney, a $100 million initiative that has the potential to transform the patient experience in children’s hospitals across the globe. Initial concepts for development include allowing children to customize their hospital visit with their favorite Disney stories and characters, reimagining spaces through augmented and virtual reality experiences, and creating themed treatment and patient rooms with interactive elements.

November 13, 2018

Early on the morning of November 7, an excited group including Texas Children’s Hospital clinical leadership, executives and members of the Kangaroo Crew and Mission Control teams gathered on the roof of Lester and Sue Smith Legacy Tower for a special ribbon cutting ceremony marking the opening of our new helistop.

Watch the video or view the photo gallery below.

“The Lester and Sue Smith Legacy Tower has always been about improving care for the sickest children we see,” said Surgeon-in-Chief Dr. Larry Hollier. “The helistop is important because it improves access for those children. Whether they’re being transported as part of a scene response for an auto accident or transferred from another hospital, we can now get children and women here in very rapid fashion within a 150-mile radius.”

The helistop is the final element of Smith Legacy Tower to go live and represents the culmination of a major expansion at our Texas Medical Center campus. Months of planning and multidisciplinary cooperation between medical staff, Transport Services and engineering and facilities teams went into preparations for the helistop opening.

“A tremendous amount of work has gone into making sure that the helistop is very safe – safe for the helicopters coming in, safe for those crew that are delivering the patients to us, and safe for our own staff,” said Executive Vice President Mark Mullarkey. “Bert Gumeringer, Gail Parazynski and Deb D’Ambrosio and their teams have been instrumental both in making sure we’re prepared to open the helistop and really in bringing Smith Legacy Tower to full completion.”

Extensive simulation exercises were also held to prepare care and transport teams for potential eventualities they may face, as well as to analyze and improve processes. This included helicopter landings, transferring patients from the helicopter crew to Texas Children’s transport teams, and moving patients from the helistop at Smith Legacy Tower to Trauma and the Emergency Center.

“The helicopter simulation was fantastic,” said Dr. Jeanine Graf, chief medical officer at West Campus and pediatric medical director of the Kangaroo Crew. “We brought together members from our trauma, surgery, ICU and NICU teams, as well as our experts in maternal-fetal medicine, for training and simulations, which were coordinated by our Texas Children’s Simulations Center. Dr. Cara Doughty really did an excellent job demonstrating how more than a hundred folks would be involved in the communication and execution of a helicopter landing at Texas Children’s.”

The helistop at Smith Legacy Tower is the third helistop in the Texas Children’s system, with others in operation at West Campus and Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands. The addition of the new helistop will facilitate the rapid transport of patients across all populations, including neonatal and maternal patients. Before the helistop opening, Texas Children’s received roughly 150 helicopter transports a year, which landed at nearby partner institutions. Now with our own helistop, we’ll be able to offer our care to even more patients who need us.

“The helistop really changes things for us,” said Deb D’Ambrosio, RN, director of Transport Services and Mission Control. “We’re certainly expecting high volume, but with the processes we’ve developed with our helicopter vendors and the high level of coordination between Transport Services and Mission Control, this is going to be so much better for our patients.”

October 2, 2018

Last week was monumental for Texas Children’s with the move of our No. 1 ranked Heart Center into the new state-of-the-art Legacy Tower. The milestone came just months after the historic May 22 move of our pediatric intensive care and progressive care units into the spacious, high-tech tower adjacent to the Texas Children’s Pavilion for Women and across the street from Mark Wallace Tower.

“What a great day it’s been for everyone at Texas Children’s as we’ve moved into the upper floors of Legacy Tower,” said Texas Children’s President and CEO Mark Wallace. “We’ve transferred a lot of patients today and everything has gone flawlessly. This remarkable new space will make a world of difference for the critically ill patients and families we serve.”

View photos below from the move and the events that followed.

The Move
Over the course of about eight hours on September 25, six specially-trained clinical teams comprised of more than 200 members transported 64 heart patients, some critically ill, safely to their new, state-of-the-art rooms in Legacy Tower. The patients ranged in age from 3 days to 22 years.

The following day, on September 26, 11-year-old Colin Rankin of Dallas, became the first patient to undergo a cardiac catheterization procedure and an intra-cath MRI in Legacy Tower at the Heart Center’s new Charles E. Mullins, M.D. Cardiac Catheterization Laboratories.

Moments before Colin’s procedure, performed by Dr. Athar Qureshi, a ribbon cutting ceremony was held to commemorate the opening of our four new catheterization labs and integrated MRI. Dr. Charles E. Mullins, the pioneering Texas Children’s physician and father of modern interventional pediatric cardiology for whom the suite of labs are named, was present at the ceremony and cut the ribbon along with Dr. Henri Justino, director of the Mullins Cardiac Catheterization Labs.

On September 27, Associate Chief of Congenital Heart Surgery Dr. Jeff Heinle cut the ribbon to officially open the Heart Center’s new cardiovascular operating rooms, and to usher in a new era of cardiac surgery at Texas Children’s. Later that morning, 4-year-old Rizan Merchant underwent the first surgical intervention in the expansive new space – a Fontan procedure, performed by Heinle.

And on October 1, patients received treatment for the first time in the new Legacy Tower Therapy Gym. The gym is a powerful resource to help children and parents learn and focus on what they can do, rather than what they can’t. Features include machines for building core strength and balance, exercise bikes, and a bathtub and set of stairs for parents to practice everyday tasks at home with their children.

A week before the move, patients and families entered the doors of the Heart Center’s new outpatient clinic for the first time. Situated on the 21st and 22nd floors of Legacy Tower, the clinic is designed top to bottom with Texas Children’s families in mind. The bright, welcoming space was specially configured to offer a more personal approach to care, and to handle high clinical volume. During the first afternoon clinic session, 25 patients were seen, and 18 outpatient echocardiograms and 18 outpatient ECGs were performed. To read more about the new Outpatient Clinic, click here.

Throughout the entire move and for days afterward, the Legacy Tower Go Live Support Center was set up on the fourth floor of the Pavilion for Women and comprised of hundreds of individuals from across the hospital system who focused on patient move tracking from West Tower to Legacy Tower. The team included support staff from Supply Chain, Security, BioMedical Engineering, Facilities Operations, Information Services, Pharmacy and Respiratory Care.

“We all are incredibly blessed by this space, but this move isn’t just about the building. It’s the people as well,” said Vice President Judy Swanson. “We have such a committed, amazing team, all of whom worked so hard to make this move happen and to make it special for our patients and families.”

The Purpose
Texas Children’s started planning for Legacy Tower more than five years ago as an effort to reinvest in the programs our most critically ill patients need. Demand for these services continues to grow – here in our community and far beyond Houston. And prior to Legacy Tower, our core areas – Critical Care, Emergency Center and ORS/PACU – were often at capacity.

As an organization, we needed to make changes that advance quality, service, safety and strategic growth. We needed to broaden our expertise and better coordinate care to improve the experiences of our patients and their families. And we needed to expand our access to make certain we do not have to turn children away when they need us most.

Legacy Tower is helping Texas Children’s accomplish all of this and more. The 640,000-square-feet of new space includes:
– 8 floors for Texas Children’s Heart Center
– 7 floors of intensive care patient rooms
– 1 radiology suite
– 6 high-intensity surgical operating rooms
– 4 cardiovascular operating rooms
– 2 intraprocedural MRIs
– 4 cardiac catheterization labs.

A helistop atop Legacy Tower is scheduled to open in November.

“The building of Legacy Tower has been a long journey and has really shown Texas Children’s at its best,” said Executive Vice President Mark Mullarkey. “This effort is and has always been focused around our patients and families.”

The Future
For our clinical staff, Legacy Tower will give them a better place to do what they do best – treat some of our most critically ill patients. It also will position them to continue to provide some of the best pediatric care in the world.

“Everything we would ever want as a specialty is here,” said new Chief of Congenital Heart Surgery Dr. Christopher Caldarone. “We have new and innovative centers like the exercise center, the gym where we can show patients what they’re capable of doing rather than telling them what they can’t do.”

All of this sets Texas Children’s apart, Caldarone said, adding that the only way to stay ahead of everyone else is make sure we bring all the expertise available to bear to every decision for every baby in a timely manner.

“That’s no small feat,” he said. “I think that’s where we’re going to be able to set ourselves apart.”

Chief of Pediatric Cardiology Dr. Daniel Penny said everything about the new Heart Center is about reducing the impact of heart disease on children and on their families.

“Whether it’s the amazing new clinical technologies that we’ve built, our new magnet in the Cardiac Catheter Lab, right down to the tiny design features,” Penny said. “They were all done with one thing in mind and that is what was best for parents and their children.”

Dr. Lara Shekerdemian, service chief of Critical Care Services, said everyone is extremely excited about Legacy Tower, the additional capacity it provides and the overall better environment it has made available to patients, families and staff. Patient rooms, Shekerdemian noted, are twice the size of the old rooms in West Towers. Dedicated family space has been incorporated into the design of the building and each inpatient room has its own bathroom.

“It’s a bright, beautiful, spacious, quiet and peaceful environment,” she said. “It’s a huge change from what we had previously.”

The Legacy of Motown Gala on September 29 at Revention Music Center topped the philanthropy charts, raising more than $83 million and making it the highest-grossing fundraising gala in Texas. The event was underwritten by The Lester & Sue Smith Foundation, whose commitment to match funds raised inspired others to generously give.

But the biggest hit of the night was the announcement of the naming of Texas Children’s latest expansion project – the Lester and Sue Smith Legacy Tower. The Smiths, who have dedicated their private wealth for public good, generously pledged $50 million to Texas Children’s to support Legacy Tower, the hospital’s new home for heart, intensive care and surgery, as well as to support patient care and research at Texas Children’s Cancer Center.

“I am incredibly grateful to Lester and Sue for this transformational gift,” said Mark Wallace, president and CEO of Texas Children’s. “Their unwavering commitment to our patients and families over the years is unmatched, and this is another shining example of their extraordinary generosity and compassionate care for others.”

Drawing from a place of gratitude for the life-saving care Lester received during his battles with cancer, the dynamic couple has dedicated more than $150 million to support research at numerous institutions including Texas Children’s, Baylor College of Medicine and Harris Health System. Following the Disco Legends event in 2012, which benefitted Texas Children’s Cancer Center, the clinic was named in their honor as the Lester and Sue Smith Clinic.

“Giving to others is our guiding philosophy,” said Lester and Sue Smith. “There is nothing more precious than a child, and we hope this gift will help support the incomparable patient care for which the hospital is known. It is truly our honor to leave a legacy of support for generations to come at Texas Children’s.”

Legacy Tower adds 640,000 square feet to Texas Children’s sprawling Texas Medical Center campus. In May, the first phase of the tower opened with six technologically advanced operating rooms for neurosurgery, orthopedics, plastic surgery, transplant and pediatric surgery – one with intraoperative MRI – and 84 ICU beds, including dedicated surgical, neurological and transitional ICU rooms. The second phase of Legacy Tower opened last week and serves as the new home for Texas Children’s Heart Center®, ranked No. 1 nationally in pediatric cardiology and heart surgery by U.S. News & World Report. This milestone will help Texas Children’s continue to provide the highest-quality care possible to patients and families, particularly those children who are critically ill.

To learn more visit

Texas Children’s Cancer Center is consistently ranked as one of the best cancer programs in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. It is the largest pediatric cancer center in the nation and the destination for children from more than 35 states and 26 countries to receive individualized, state-of-the-art cancer care. Additionally, more than 91,000 outpatient visits occur in the Lester and Sue Smith Clinic each year.

To learn more visit

The past few weeks have been a flurry of activity as phase II of the Legacy Tower move-in drew to a close. In the final push, we opened the Heart Center outpatient clinic, moved 65 cardiovascular acute care and cardiovascular intensive care unit patients from West Tower to Legacy Tower, and opened our new catheterization labs and cardiovascular operating rooms. We also celebrated another exciting opening – a third blood bank, located on the 16th floor of Legacy Tower.

“The new blood bank is another major milestone for Texas Children’s,” said Transfusion Safety Officer Nicole Crews, RN. “Ensuring potentially life-saving blood products are quickly and more easily accessible is key to the care of many patients in Legacy Tower. This new location will increase efficiency and ensure we have the right blood products available when they’re needed.”

In an emergency situation when a blood product is needed, time is of the essence. If blood is closer to the bedside, runners don’t have to go as far to travel. Now, with locations in Legacy Tower, the Pavilion for Women and Abercrombie Tower (servicing both West Tower and Mark Wallace Tower), transport times could be reduced to as little as 5 to 10 minutes, down from 20 to 30.

In addition to proximity convenience, Texas Children’s blood banks are committed to providing the safest and highest quality blood products for our patients.

“Due to our tremendous volume and the diverse needs of not only our patients, but of the departments and service areas that require blood, we have to make sure we always have the right blood products available,” Crews said. “We provide plasma, platelets, red blood cells and cryoprecipitate for everything from pre- and post-op procedures to PICU patients, who can need three to four transfusions a day.”

At Texas Children’s, we’re fortunate to have a blood bank at each of our three hospital campuses. Combined, between 2,400 and 2,800 products (units and aliquots) are issued every month across our campuses, making transfusions possible for more than 500 patients.

The transfusion process comprises several steps and touchpoints – including type/screen collection and processing – and must be completed with the utmost safety, and at the highest standards, to mitigate risk and provide the patient with the best possible care. The blood bank is committed to meeting and exceeding the highest safety standards for every patient and every transfusion. To ensure that high level of excellence, Crews teaches the Five Rights of safe transfusion practices:

  • Right patient
  • Right processes
  • Right blood product
  • Right place
  • Right volume/rate

“We want staff across the hospital to know that the new blood bank in Legacy Tower is open and fully operational,” said Crews. “Many months were spent planning, preparing and validating equipment to ensure the utmost service is provided, and Transfusion Medicine and blood bank personnel are ready and excited to continue to grow with Texas Children’s and our patients.”

Learn more about our blood bank locations and which one you should visit to pick up your patient’s blood.