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When Phase 1 of our growth plan is complete, it will include 192 private patient rooms, a kitchen, a service dock, a new emergency department and – because it must remain near the emergency department – a new helistop. We heard concerns from our neighbors about moving the helistop so we worked with helicopter experts, emergency department staff and the community to create a plan that will relocate the helistop in stages as follows:

  • When we complete phase 1 and the emergency department relocates, we will move the helistop to an interim site on the ground north of phase 1.
  • When construction begins on our new diagnostic and treatment center, the helistop will move to a second interim site on the roof of phase 1.
  • When the new diagnostic and treatment center opens, the helistop will move to a final location on the roof of that building near where it was envisioned in the council-approved master plan.  We anticipate this being built just north of the phase 1 structure.

Existing rules for helicopter landings will remain in place throughout the process. Only the most critically ill or injured children – those experiencing level 4 or level 5 trauma – are airlifted directly to Children’s. Airlifted patients who are not in critical condition land at the University of Washington and are transported to Children’s by ambulance.

Over the last 10 years, an average of 4 – 5 patients a month have been airlifted directly to Children’s. During the first six months of this year, 25 patients were airlifted straight to Children’s while 55 landed at the University of Washington. This helistop relocation plan has been presented to the Standing Advisory Committee and we have applied for a master use permit with the city.