Chicago-based Northwestern Memorial HealthCare broke ground on its new, $502.5 million Prentice Women's Hospital and Maternity Center today. The 256-bed hospital, slated for a 2007 opening, will replace the 28-year-old Prentice Women's Hospital and Maternity Center. Northwestern officials said the need has grown beyond the current facility's capacity -- when it opened, Prentice was projected to deliver 3,000 babies per year, but last year delivered 9,032, making it one of the top-25 birthing centers in the country and the largest in the seven-state Midwest region. When the new facility opens in four years, Northwestern is projecting it will be one of the top three maternity centers in the nation, with a capacity for 13,500 deliveries. The new hospital will include a full range of women's health services, including oncology, genetics, cardiology and geriatrics, and office space for 100 physicians. The new and improved Prentice will feature all private rooms, 32 labor and delivery rooms, 134 post and antepartum beds, 28 OB/GYN oncology beds, 144 newborn bassinets, 86 neonatal intensive-care unit beds and 10 operating rooms. -- by Mark Taylor
Northwestern breaks ground on new hospital
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