the new Alberta Children’s Hospital
in Calgary, Alberta, the hospital
became the first free-standing pediatric facility to be built in Canada in more than 20 years.
The Alberta Children’s Hospital was designed by the people who will use the building the most – patients, families, physicians and staff of the hospital. In 2002, architects created renderings of how the hospital could look; a multi-storey brick building. These drawings were brought to the hospital’s Teen Advisory Group (TAG) and changed beyond recognition into a colourful, kid-friendly building closely resembling toy building blocks. This is how the building looks today as it sits on a hilltop overlooking downtown Calgary, the Bow River and the Rocky Mountains.
The vision for the Alberta Children’s Hospital was to create a building that would reduce stress and promote healing. The interior of the hospital has been designed to enable the delivery of family centred care. Children are not just little adults – unique and specialized health care teams are required to provide care to this patient population. The hospital includes supports for families such as sleeping facilities for parents in each patient room, a babysitting service for siblings of patients, a sacred space for spiritual activities, a pet visitation room and the Healing Gardens that surround the new hospital, giving parents and their children areas to heal, to have fun and to spend private time.
The Alberta Children’s Hospital is used by patients from birth to age 18 from southern Alberta, southeastern British Columbia and southeastern Saskatchewan.