Taking Preventive Wellness Down to the Next Level

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, the saying goes. At a new Children’s Health - Plano specialty facility designed by Page in the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex, the Andrews Institute for Orthopedics & Sports Medicine delivers on this mentality by bringing world-class orthopedic care in state-of-the-art facilities to pediatric patients. With the highest concentration of competitive student athletes in the country, this location is addressing a demonstrated need and will serve as a model for future facilities nationwide.

Building on the successful platform of the original Andrews Institute in Florida, renowned surgeon Dr. James R. Andrews collaborated with Children’s Health - Plano to develop the new institute after observing that his practice was full every Monday morning with pediatric patients who had suffered sports injuries over the weekend. Some childhood orthopedic injuries manifest themselves immediately, while others like post-traumatic arthritis surface many years later. Dr. Andrews and Children’s Health Plano recognized the need to address both acute and chronic consequences of childhood injury by rehabbing young athletes as well as providing them with the training and resources to prevent future injury altogether.

When it opens later in 2017, the Institute will provide a complete continuum of care, from wellness training to nutrition counseling, to surgery, rehabilitation and therapy, all in a centralized location on the existing Children’s Health - Plano campus. According to Michael Wiggins, senior vice president and administrator of Children’s Health - Plano who spoke to Healthcare Design Magazine, the Andrews Institute is unique because it will draw patients to the facility for reasons beyond receiving healthcare by serving those interested in wellness and healthy living. The new Institute will help shape the mission of the entire Children’s Health - Plano campus by bridging health and wellness with a focus on orthopedics.

Children’s Health tapped Page to design the specialty center housing the Andrews Institute for Orthopedics & Sports Medicine using an integrated project delivery process. The two entities had previously collaborated on the Children’s Health - Plano Hospital. The current project scope is a four-story Specialty Center II of which the Andrews Institute will occupy the first two levels.

An important facet of the design process was the inclusion of surgeons, physical therapists and conditioning specialists in design meetings. The delivery of these services will be carefully orchestrated and coordinated to improve the patient experience and the healthcare outcome. Involving the practitioners ensures the design supports their efforts at the start. Building on this theme with the sports and orthopedic clinics, the Institute also includes complementary clinics for spine, neurological, and concussion care. 

According to Page Principal Beth Carroll, a member of the design team, there is an additional benefit to the continuum-of-care delivery model. She told Healthcare Design Magazine, “When you come in with an injury, you see the kids who have gone through the recovery process and are back out playing sports. So there’s a lot of play and inspiration that the patients and families are seeing.”

The Institute, along with its ambulatory surgery center and outpatient imaging, will also incorporate a training gym, half-sized football field and a track that will support entire teams of student athletes in rehabilitation and development of body awareness to prevent injury. Including these elements in the building bridges the gap between health and wellness and helps injured children feel connected to a bigger community of student athletes.

To read more about the Children's Health - Plano Andrews Institute for Orthopedics & Sports Medicine in Healthcare Design Magazine, click here