Thursday, June 12, 2008 - Chris Evert Children’s Hospital Celebrates Official Opening of Sickle Cell Treatment & Wellness Center

Broward Health Chris Evert Children’s Hospital celebrated the official opening of its Transitional Sickle Cell Day Treatment & Wellness Center Wednesday at a reception. Broward Health’s Commissioners, Broward County officials and guests gathered to enjoy refreshments and hear remarks from notable speakers.

Through a $249,861 grant from the Health Foundation of South Florida and a check presented by Broward County Mayor Josephus Eggelletion, Jr. for $175,000 from proceeds that were collected at the 2007 annual Mayor’s Gala, Broward Health established the center to improve the quality of life for teens and young adults living with sickle cell disease.

“These young patients and their families can take comfort in knowing they can go directly to a center that specializes in treating the symptoms of this disease,” said Frank Nask, President/CEO of Broward Health.

Housed in the Chris Evert Children’s Hospital, the center is designed with a focus on sickle cell patients 18 and older to assist them as they leave their pediatrician and enter the world of adult care. It includes eight patient beds, a nutrition center, and an entertainment area for patients while they receive not only medical treatment for sickle cell crisis, but also obtain wellness care in order to avoid a crisis.

“This is the most exciting opportunity to improve patient care for this patient population,” said Dr. Rudolph Roskos, Medical Director of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology at the Chris Evert Children’s Hospital at Broward General Medical Center. “Our hopes are that it will be a model for other hospitals that wish to provide care to young adults with sickle cell.”

Once enrolled in the program, care is monitored and overseen by a case manager from Broward Health's Community Health Services. By offering disease case management, wellness care and sickle cell treatment, the program will reduce emergency department visits, inpatient hospital stays and costs associated with treating the disease. To expedite care and decrease the severity of a crisis, patients are able to bypass the emergency department and go directly to the day center.

Additional services available through the day treatment and wellness center include annual check-ups and exams; patient counseling; newborn screening and genetic counseling; chronic transfusion services; support groups for teens, parents, adults; and adult psychiatric services, including stress management & family counseling.

Broward Health, providing service for more than 50 years, is a nationally recognized system offering world class health care services to our neighbors in South Florida. One of the five largest public health systems in the nation, Broward Health includes Broward General Medical Center, North Broward Medical Center, Imperial Point Medical Center, Coral Springs Medical Center, Chris Evert Children’s Hospital, Broward Health Weston and more than 30 facilities of the Community Health Services and Broward Health Physician Group. For more information visit

Health Foundation of South Florida, a not-for-profit grant making foundation, is dedicated to expanding access to affordable, quality health care and providing funding that directly benefits the health and well being of underserved individuals in Broward, Miami-Dade and Monroe Counties. Since its inception in 1993, the Foundation has awarded more than $67 million in grants and direct program support.

Front row:
Rhonda A. Calhoun, Vice Chair, and Joseph Cobo, Treasurer, North Broward Hospital District Board of Commissioners; Frank Nask, President/CEO of Broward Health; Rebecca Stoll, Secretary, North Broward Hospital District Board of Commissioners; Alice Taylor, Chief Operating Officer, Broward General Medical Center; Jasmin Shirley, Vice President, Community Health Services, Broward Health; and Shelley Dagen, Immediate Past Chairman, Health Foundation of South Florida.

Back row:
Rudolph Roskos, Medical Director, Chris Evert Children's Hospital; Peter Wood, Vice President of Programs and Community Investments Health Foundation of South Florida; Rep. Oscar Braynon II, D-Miami Gardens.