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Florida Hospital for Children debuts renovated, spacious cancer unit

Florida Hospital for Children is pleased to open its renovated hematology/oncology unit, which features significantly larger patient rooms, state-of-the-art equipment and a family lounge. 

Florida Hospital for Children’s hematology/oncology unit was first built more than 15 years ago. The 16 small rooms didn’t have space for modern hospital features or to accommodate guests. To meet today’s needs, the unit was redesigned with 12 state-of-the art rooms, which include sleeping and storage spaces for each family.

For cancer patients who often have a lengthy stay at the hospital, space is more than just comfort; it is part of the recovery process, especially when they have to be isolated in their rooms due to a weak immune system.

“Health care and medicine have evolved significantly since this unit was originally designed, and we now know the importance families play in healing,” said Dr. Fouad Hajjar, medical director of hematology/oncology at Florida Hospital for Children. “These can be very challenging times for our patients and their families, and we want to provide an environment that is healing for all.”

The redesign, which took into account the feedback from the families, also includes a common family area where parents can relax and support each other, a new playroom and nurse workstations.

The renovation was made possible, in part, by Runway to Hope. The organization, founded by Mark and Josie NeJame, is a longtime Florida Hospital for Children partner dedicated to raising awareness and fighting childhood cancer.

"Runway to Hope is committed to helping all families facing the challenges and ravages of pediatric cancer. Whenever there is a need for us in Central Florida, we’ll be there,” said Mark NeJame.

“We are humbled that Florida Hospital for Children is dedicating their new hematology/oncology playroom after Runway to Hope and our NeJame family. Our hopes are that this modern and fully equipped playroom will bring endless hours of support, joy, and happiness to these brave kids as they battle their disease,” Josie NeJame said.

Patients are slated to move into the new unit this week.

“This is the result of a community-wide effort and we are grateful for our partners, donors and physicians who are improving the healing experience of countless children and helping advance pediatric medicine,” said Marla Silliman, senior executive officer of Florida Hospital for Children. 

For media inquiries only, contact Florida Hospital Corporate Communications at 407-303-5950 or email FHCorporateCommunicationsTeam@flhosp.org.

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