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PHILADELPHIA – The University of Pennsylvania will build a $1.5 billion new hospital on Penn Medicine’s West Philadelphia campus. The Pavilion, which will house inpatient care for the Abramson Cancer Center, heart and vascular medicine and surgery, neurology and neurosurgery, and a new emergency department, is expected to be completed in 2021. The facility will be the largest capital project in Penn’s history and Philadelphia’s most sophisticated and ambitious health care building project.

“Penn is proud to be the preeminent health system in the Philadelphia region. This building will be transformational, serving as the flagship facility for Penn Medicine and setting a new standard for modern health care delivery across the nation,” said Penn President Amy Gutmann. “This is the hospital that will define America’s best medicine for generations to come.”

At the heart of the new hospital’s design: flexibility to stand the test of time in the rapidly evolving health care field.

“We’re building a hospital that will allow us to deliver the very best care the 21st century can offer patients – but we’re also ‘future-proofing’ it to ensure that we can quickly and seamlessly adapt what we do to help our patients in the coming decades,” said J. Larry Jameson, MD, PhD, dean of the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and executive vice president of the University for the Health System.

The Pavilion will house 500 private patient rooms and 47 operating rooms in a 1.5 million square foot, 17-story facility on the former site of Penn Tower, across the street from the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and adjacent to the medical campus’s outpatient hub, the Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine.

“As the nation’s oldest teaching hospital, the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania is rooted in a history of firsts going back nearly 150 years,” said Ralph W. Muller, CEO of the University of Pennsylvania Health System. “Now, with the Pavilion, we’re poised for the next 100 years of advances in patient care.”

Among distinguishing features in The Pavilion:

  • An adaptable room concept through which patient rooms are equipped to flex between an intensive care unit set-up, if needed, and a standard room as patients recover, or as the patient population and caregiving needs change in the coming years. Each spacious room will include a private bath and a comfortable area for family members and caregivers to stay close by.
  • A seamless flow of operations – from the emergency department through hybrid operating rooms used for both surgeries and high-tech interventional procedures through recovery and discharge – enhanced by technology and the latest research on how to facilitate and improve care team collaboration.
  • Telemedicine functionality that allows remote monitoring and consultations, as well as technology to link patients to their friends and families at all times. In-room technology will strengthen communication between patients, families, and care teams.
  • An eco-friendly construction, design and operations plan that fortifies Penn’s commitment to the environment, through pursuit of LEED certification, and innovations like the re-use of water, 100 percent outside air, and park-like, outdoor green space for patients, families and staff.

The design and planning process for the Pavilion has been orchestrated by PennFirst, an Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) team consisting of the global healthcare design firm HDR, the international architect Foster+Partners, and the innovative engineering design capabilities of BR+A, as well as the construction management expertise of L.F. Driscoll and Balfour Beatty. Staff from each group – as well as Penn Medicine clinical, facilities, and patient experience experts  –  work collaboratively in a specially designed “integration space” to ensure cohesion and strategic planning and reduce waste at each step of the project.

The building’s design has been informed by extensive and inclusive consultation with Penn Medicine staff, from physicians and nurses to environmental and dining services workers. These groups have engaged with the design team through a series of tours and patient care simulations in multiple full-size mock-ups of the new facility’s inpatient units as well as operating rooms, family waiting areas, and spaces for staff. Patients and families have also participated in tours and provided feedback to inform plans for the Pavilion’s patient experience.

The Pavilion: By the Numbers

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Penn Medicine is one of the world’s leading academic medical centers, dedicated to the related missions of medical education, biomedical research, excellence in patient care, and community service. The organization consists of the University of Pennsylvania Health System and Penn’s Raymond and Ruth Perelman School of Medicine, founded in 1765 as the nation’s first medical school.

The Perelman School of Medicine is consistently among the nation's top recipients of funding from the National Institutes of Health, with $550 million awarded in the 2022 fiscal year. Home to a proud history of “firsts” in medicine, Penn Medicine teams have pioneered discoveries and innovations that have shaped modern medicine, including recent breakthroughs such as CAR T cell therapy for cancer and the mRNA technology used in COVID-19 vaccines.

The University of Pennsylvania Health System’s patient care facilities stretch from the Susquehanna River in Pennsylvania to the New Jersey shore. These include the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Penn Presbyterian Medical Center, Chester County Hospital, Lancaster General Health, Penn Medicine Princeton Health, and Pennsylvania Hospital—the nation’s first hospital, founded in 1751. Additional facilities and enterprises include Good Shepherd Penn Partners, Penn Medicine at Home, Lancaster Behavioral Health Hospital, and Princeton House Behavioral Health, among others.

Penn Medicine is an $11.1 billion enterprise powered by more than 49,000 talented faculty and staff.

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