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A New Home for Ochsner Children’s

Mother holding son in the air and laughing

At Ochsner Health, we pride ourselves on being the No. 1 ranked hospital for kids in Louisiana. We are thrilled to announce that our commitment to providing exceptional pediatric care is getting a new home. 

This move signifies our dedication to expanding access to leading treatments for more children in Louisiana and across the Gulf South. Ochsner Children’s expects to break ground in mid-2024 and open the doors to its new home in late 2027.

Here's to a bright future. Long Live Healthy Kids.

The Gayle and Tom Benson Ochsner Children's Hospital

The Gayle and Tom Benson Ochsner Children’s Hospital is designed exclusively for children and their families, ensuring an ideal experience for all. Our new state-of-the-art facility reflects the caliber of care that Ochsner Children’s provides as Louisiana’s top pediatric program. This move will also enable us to attract and retain top talent, ensuring that your child always receives the best care possible.

The Gayle and Tom Benson Ochsner Childrens Hospital Rendering

Located at Ochsner Medical Center - New Orleans, our new five-story, 343,000-square-foot building will be easily accessible with a connected parking garage and dedicated pediatric emergency department entrance.

The Gayle and Tom Benson Ochsner Children’s Hospital is not just a new home for us; it's a testament to our commitment to providing exceptional pediatric care. As Louisiana's top pediatric program, we are excited to continue leading the way in children's healthcare.

In our new home, we will be able to:
  • Provide an ideal experience for patients and their families plus_icon minus_icon

    An ideal pediatric care experience focuses not only on a child's medical needs but also their emotional and psychological well-being. We are committed to involving the family in the care process, ensuring a comprehensive approach to your child's health.

    Our new facility is designed with children in mind, keeping everything for kids in one place and separated from adult patients. This ensures a safe, comfortable environment tailored to the unique needs of our young patients. 

    Children's-only emergency department, critical care, operating room and imaging

    Our new facility will feature significant enhancements, particularly in the children's-only emergency department, more critical care beds, operating room and imaging capacity and will be designed to support the development of a trauma center. The dedicated children's-only emergency department will add 18 new beds, bringing the total to 26 and creating a more accessible space for patients and families.

    The new building will be home to the various support services Ochsner Children's offers, such as social workers, chaplains, child psychologists and Child Life therapists. 

  • Care for more children plus_icon minus_icon

    Ochsner Children’s cares for more than 100,000 children every year. This new facility will help us better meet the needs of our communities because we know there are many more families who want their children to receive care at Ochsner. To ensure children and families of Louisiana have access to the best care when they need it, anywhere they need it, Ochsner Children’s has been building a nationally trained team of top pediatric physicians and is now providing them with a dedicated home.

  • Reflect the caliber of care plus_icon minus_icon

    Our new, state-of-the-art facility will reflect the caliber of care Ochsner Children’s provides as Louisiana’s top pediatric program. We have a responsibility to ensure that the state’s number one ranked children’s hospital is equipped to provide the best care possible in the best environment possible — for kids today and for generations to come.

    For the past three consecutive years, Ochsner Children's has been named the No. 1 hospital for kids in Louisiana in the Best Children’s Hospital rankings by U.S. News & World Report. From rare brain tumors and leukemia to heart conditions and organ transplants, we offer a level of pediatric care unmatched in Louisiana and more advanced capabilities than any other children’s hospital in New Orleans.

    Ochsner Children's offers the only pediatric heart transplant program in Louisiana and the most comprehensive liver transplant program in the region and offers more than 30 pediatric specialties and sub-specialties, such as pediatric gastroenterology, pediatric hematology, pediatric cardiology, pediatric pulmonology and more. The new facility will also house a Level IV Surgical Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), allowing our care teams to provide highly specialized care for babies requiring surgery. Pediatric critical care units will expand to 40 ICU rooms, as well as two cardiac cath lab suites.

  • Attract and retain top talent plus_icon minus_icon

    Over the years, Ochsner Children’s has expanded its pediatrics program with the best and brightest specialists and sub-specialists. This facility will help us to not only retain these highly skilled experts but also attract more of our nation’s top professionals to care for patients in Louisiana. To meet growing needs, we have recruited faculty from the top-ranked children’s hospitals around the country to establish cutting-edge, innovative, multidisciplinary care for children here in our region.

    Ochsner Children’s is home to more than 200 physicians who specialize in 30+ pediatric specialties and sub-specialties, and our team is ever expanding to meet the needs of our region’s children and families. This new home will also house our pediatrics residency program, where we use an innovative, apprenticeship-model of training to prepare generations of pediatricians.

Ochsner Children’s Community Impact
  • Ochsner Healthy Schools Program plus_icon minus_icon

    The mission of the Ochsner Healthy Schools Program is to improve access to healthcare for all children while fostering a supportive school environment. We offer resources to children to improve their physical and emotional well-being at their schools. We also provide support to educators and school leaders.

    The Ochsner Healthy Schools Program serves 169 schools and more than 100,000 students in the New Orleans and Baton Rouge areas and Hancock County, Mississippi. Our program provides hearing and vision screenings for students; CPR training for staff; science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) activities; career chats; and connections to many important community resources.

  • School Nurse Program plus_icon minus_icon

    Ochsner’s School Nurse Program partners with 21 schools across Orleans, Jefferson and St. Tammany parishes. In total, 12,520 students have access to our trained medical professionals through this program. In 2023, more than 24,000 school nurse visits have been completed, with 92% of students who visit an Ochsner school nurse able to return to the classroom.

  • Discovery Schools plus_icon minus_icon

    The Dr. John Ochsner Discovery Health Sciences Academy is a high-performing, open-enrollment, tuition-free, K-8 charter school that prepares a diverse student body to succeed in life and pursue careers in the health sciences industry. Ochsner Health has made a significant investment in education through this partnership with Discovery Schools, which started in 2019.

    These schools will help prepare our kids for the future with a strong health sciences curriculum and a focus on STEM education. The buildings offer science labs, a library and media center, a teaching kitchen and culinary garden, a satellite center for child development, a large gym, a cafeteria and specialized classrooms to provide services to students with mental health needs.

    In 2021, the academy opened a new, state-of-the-art school campus just one mile away from Ochsner Medical Center – New Orleans in the Shrewsbury community. This new campus serves more than 700 students in pre-K through eighth -grade.

    Ochsner and Discovery Schools also partnered to open Baton Rouge Ochsner Discovery Healthy Sciences Academy in fall 2023 serving pre-K through fourth grade, with plans to extend to eighth grade by 2027-2028.

  • Son of a Saint plus_icon minus_icon

    In 2020, Ochsner health partnered with Son of a Saint, a nonprofit organization dedicated to inspiring mentorship and transforming lives of New Orleans’ fatherless boys. This partnership helps fund critical programs and staff to help the whole child – mind, body and spirit – through healthcare educators, social workers and mental health professionals. Additionally, Ochsner Health’s male staff serves as mentors to boys in the program.

    Each year, Son of a Saint selects a group of boys ages 10-12 to join the program. The boys must be fatherless due to their fathers’ death or incarceration. Each boy remains an official Son of a Saint mentee until age 18. Son of a Saint continues to advise them into young adulthood. The organization’s goal is to graduate self-sufficient, independent thinkers who are leaders and give back to their community.

  • STEM NOLA plus_icon minus_icon

    Ochsner partners with STEM NOLA to help all children have access to education in science, technology, engineering and math. In September 2022, at the Urban League of Louisiana and Ochsner Health’s Big Health Event, STEM NOLA was featured as part of the Ochsner STEM Zone. The event offered engaging activities for more than 344 children from New Orleans and surrounding areas. Ochsner staff have also collaborated with STEM NOLA to support the organization’s STEM Saturday events. Ochsner provides subject matter experts to help children make the connection between the fun hands-on activities to meaningful career paths.

    In August 2023, STEM NOLA hosted STEM Fest, presented by The National Medical Association, and powered by Ochsner Health. This free event engaged over 600 K-12 students and caregivers, college and professional volunteers, and elected officials. The event provided students with an opportunity to meet with medical professionals to learn about the human anatomy, highlight critical roles in healthcare, and see the connection between STEM and medicine.

Pediatric Patient Spotlight

One in every 100 babies born in the United States are born with a heart defect. Thomas Reller was one of them. Thomas was born with a massive hole in his heart and two backward arteries.

Read more about Thomas' journey here.

Abigail Reller and Brittany Baker McGregor were only doors away from each other in the Ochsner Cardiac PICU. They never realized how much their lives would one day cross over through their children’s health journeys.

Read more about their journey at Ochsner Children's.

  • Michael's Inspiring Story: How 5-Year-Old's Life was Saved By 38 Surgeries

    Michael Podgurksi was born with a complex series of birth defects, including hydrocephalus and tetralogy of fallot. His parents were told that he may never walk or talk, and would certainly always be behind.

    Now, after almost 40 surgeries, 5-year-old Michael is thriving and was even named student of the month at his school.

  • How a Liver Transplant Saved a Child’s Life

    Liam Williamson was born with biliary atresia. Liam's liver was failing. At age two, he needed a liver transplant to survive. Throughout the entire process, his mother, Amy, documented Liam's journey with photos and videos. Six years later, Amy shows Liam her photo album while telling him the story of how Ochsner saved his life.

  • What Makes a Pediatric ER Different?

    What's the difference between the pediatric ER and a regular ER? 

  • Common Cold Remedies for Kids Under 6

    Amber Medine, MD, addresses a misunderstanding some parents have when treating colds for children under 6 years old and provides a few safe yet effective medications to give your child.

Mother holding son and laughing together

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