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2019-2020 Annual Report - April

D.I.S.C. Space

Eric Ayers, manager of the Discovery Innovation & Simulation Center, watches as the 3D printer creates swabs for COVID-19 testing

Eric Ayers, manager of the Discovery Innovation & Simulation Center, watches as the 3D printer creates swabs for COVID-19 testing

In March 2020, Children’s Hospital opened its state-of-the-art innovation center – just as a novel strand of coronavirus swept across the country and shut down our community and our world.

The space immediately became an area for creative problem-solving to combat the many challenges COVID-19 presented. Among its many breakthroughs in 2020, the center was able to 3D print swabs for COVID-19 testing when supplies ran short.

Children’s Hospital uses the swabs to collect samples to test for COVID-19, but the swabs can also be used to test for common seasonal illnesses like flu, RSV and other respiratory illnesses.

Eric Ayers, manager of the Discovery Innovation and Simulation Center (DISC), credits the COVID-19 pandemic interruption with allowing innovation to take the lead.

“This allowed us to utilize what this center’s about,” says Ayers. “It’s allowed our simulation team to take a breath, to just relax, and to say how can we actually make this work for our staff, our patients, and our organization?”

The $3.2 million center was generously funded by Discovery. It features almost 12,000 square feet of training rooms, simulation space, and equipment and technology.

Though, in 2020, DISC has not been able to fill the training and meeting spaces to their full capacity, the center has learned – like the rest of the world – to adapt and plan for the future. Because children are the future, and by allowing its innovators a space to think outside the box, Children’s Hospital will continue to build better futures for children in our community.

Around The Hospital - Printing Swabs In The Sim Center

Three illustrated hot air balloons in the clouds

Hospital Admission Stats 2020

NICU patient visits 946
PICU patient visits 375
Second floor visits 1,703
Third floor visits 1,574
Fourth floor visits 569

Did you know? DISC is home to donor-funded safety programs like Safe Sitters and CPR classes. These important community programs – and the center itself – couldn’t exist without the continued support from donors like you. Please consider making a contribution to our efforts to make the future better and safer for all.

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