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CHKD News Releases

View our archive of past news releases. Media inquiries can be made by calling (757) 475-8839.

Recent News Releases and Stories

Monday, August 15, 2022
Contact: Elizabeth Earley: Elizabeth.Earley@CHKD.org or (757) 668-9049

U.S. News & World Report Ranks CHKD Cardiac Collaborative 20th in the Nation

 

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. – U.S. News & World Report has ranked the Virginia Congenital Cardiac Collaborative, CHKD’s partnership with University of Virginia Children’s hospital, one of the best cardiology and heart surgery programs in the country. 

The publication’s 2022-23 “Best Children’s Hospitals” guide ranked the collaborative No. 20 among the top 50 pediatric cardiology and heart surgery programs in the nation.

 

The U.S. News Best Children’s Hospitals guide identifies hospitals providing the highest-quality care for children with the most serious or complicated healthcare needs. The rankings are based on several factors, including patient outcomes, the availability of specialized clinics and programs, patient safety measures and a national survey of pediatric specialists.

Virginia Congenital Cardiac Collaborative was formed in 2017 and combines the efforts of pediatric cardiologists, cardiac surgeons, cardiac anesthesiologists, intensive care physicians and cardiac support professionals from CHKD and UVA with the goal of improving outcomes for children with complex congenital heart defects.

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CHKD is the only freestanding children’s hospital in Virginia and serves the medical and surgical needs of children throughout greater Hampton Roads, the Eastern Shore of Virginia, and northeastern North Carolina. The not-for-profit CHKD Health System operates primary care pediatric practices, surgical practices, multi-service health centers, urgent care centers, and satellite offices throughout its service region. In 2019, CHKD broke ground on a 60-bed, 14-story hospital and outpatient center on its campus to address the mental health crisis facing our youth. The new tower on CHKD’s campus in Norfolk opened to outpatient services in April 2022, with inpatient beds opening in October 2022. Learn more at CHKD.org.

 

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Monday, August 8, 2022
Contact: Elizabeth Earley: Elizabeth.Earley@CHKD.org or (757) 668-9049

Actor and Comedian Jay Pharoah Donates $5,000 in Celebrity Family Feud Winnings to CHKD

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. – Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters is the grateful recipient of $5,000 won by Chesapeake native and comedian Jay Pharoah and his family during Sunday night’s airing of Celebrity Family Feud produced by Fremantle for ABC. 

Jay Pharoah, an Indian River High School graduate, first gained fame as an actor and comedian on Saturday Night Live. He has since amassed an impressive resume of meaningful and varied roles. On the big screen he has starred in Hulu’s Bad Hair, Lionsgate’s 2 Minutes of Fame, Universal’s All My Life and Timothy Scott Bogart’s upcoming Spinning Gold. He has lent his vocal talents to a number of projects including FOX’s Family Guy, Sony Pictures Animation The Mitchells vs. The Machines and The Adventures of Drunky.

In addition to performing stand-up around the country throughout the year, Jay released an EP last year titled “Spittin’ Image." All of the tracks are a marriage between Jay’s impressions and his love of songwriting and rapping.

Jay teamed up with his parents, Antonio and Ramona Farrow, his cousin, Jovel Ford, and his sister and manager, Shaina Farrow, to compete against comedian Rhys Darby and his team.

Shaina Farrow’s son, Parker, spent 28 days in CHKD’s neonatal intensive care unit after having surgery shortly after he was born in 2017, which inspired the family to choose CHKD as its Celebrity Family Feud charity. Parker was born with a birth defect in which part of his esophagus did not develop properly. Thanks to CHKD surgeons and NICU staff, he’s now a thriving 5-year-old.

CHKD’s 70-bed unit is the largest and highest level NICU in the region, and cares for about 500 babies a year. These newborn babies come to CHKD's NICU from hospitals throughout southeastern Virginia, the Eastern Shore and northeastern North Carolina. Most are born prematurely, some as early as 22 weeks gestation. Others suffer from severe heart and lung conditions or birth defects that require early surgical intervention. The NICU combines advanced technology and trained healthcare professionals to provide specialized care for the tiniest patients.

Thanks to Team Jay Pharoah for choosing CHKD as its Celebrity Family Feud charity. In case you missed the broadcast airing on ABC, Jay Pharoah’s episode of Celebrity Family Feud is now available to watch on Hulu.

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Wednesday, July 13, 2022
Contact: Elizabeth Earley: Elizabeth.Earley@CHKD.org or (757) 668-9049

Mid Atlantic Dairy Queen Pledges $5 Million to CHKD’s Mental Health Initiative

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. – Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters has received a $5 million dollar pledge from long-time benefactor Mid Atlantic Dairy Queen to support its “Lighting the Way” mental health initiative.

The generous pledge will be provided through a variety of fundraising efforts, including a “round up” campaign at the registers of all 14 Mid Atlantic DQs that will allow customers to round up their purchase to the nearest dollar through the end of the year.

You can also visit the Mid Atlantic DQs on Miracle Treat Day, July 28, and $1 from every Blizzard will be donated to CHKD. Coin canisters and employee donations will also go toward the $5 million pledge.

“Our fans and our team love giving to CHKD, so we keep raising the bar on our pledges,” said Mitch Sandlin, CEO of Mid Atlantic Dairy Queen. “The enthusiasm for CHKD never ends, and the community continues to step up to support the projects the children need.”  

CHKD’s Lighting the Way campaign has expanded our mental health team and launched the transformative Children’s Pavilion, a 14-story tower on Gresham Drive that opened to outpatient services in April. The first of 60 private inpatient beds for psychiatric treatment will open in the fall. 

Children’s Pavilion inpatient units will feature healing amenities like creative expression spaces for music and art therapy, an indoor gym, and a rooftop recreation center where hospitalized children can get exercise and fresh air. 

“We appreciate Mid Atlantic Dairy Queen’s incredible generosity in support of CHKD’s mental health initiative,” said Jim Dahling, CHKD president and CEO. “Their $5 million pledge will have a powerful impact on the quality of care we are able to offer our children.”

Currently, the pavilion offers outpatient mental health treatment, primary care, sports medicine, and  laboratory and radiology services. The goal is to provide an environment that integrates access to mental health services into other routine services in order to de-stigmatize the identification and treatment of psychiatric conditions within the pediatric population.

"Mental health is fundamental to children’s well-being,” said Matthew Bean, director of marketing of Mid Atlantic Dairy Queen. “Creating mental health resources builds a better future for them and for the entire community."

Once it is fully operating, the CHKD mental health hospital will employ more than 400 doctors, nurses, therapists, and other mental health professionals who will treat thousands of children across the state and beyond. In a far-reaching aspect of the initiative, a fellowship training program for child and adolescent psychiatrists also is being developed to train mental health providers. This critical program will improve access to care in Hampton Roads and also help address the extreme shortage of child and adolescent psychiatrists across the country.

To learn more about the mental health initiative, visit this Lighting the Way link

About Mid Atlantic Dairy Queen LLC

Mid Atlantic Dairy Queen LLC is locally owned and operated out of Franklin, VA.  Owners include Mitch Sandlin, Tom Morrisette, and Dairy Queen of Virginia. Operating 14 stores in seven cities, Mid-Atlantic Dairy Queen employs over 300 people and has been serving Hampton Roads for nearly 50 years. Mid-Atlantic Dairy Queen strives to give people excellent service and a lasting memory with the DQ brand.

CHKD is the only freestanding children’s hospital in Virginia and serves the medical and surgical needs of children throughout greater Hampton Roads, the Eastern Shore of Virginia, and northeastern North Carolina. The not-for-profit CHKD Health System operates primary care pediatric practices, surgical practices, multi-service health centers, urgent care centers, and satellite offices throughout its service region. In 2019, CHKD broke ground on a 60-bed, 14-story hospital and outpatient center on its campus to address the mental health crisis facing our youth. The new tower on CHKD’s campus in Norfolk opened to outpatient services in April 2022, with inpatient beds opening later in the year. Learn more at CHKD.org.

 

 

 

 

 

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Friday, June 3, 2022
Contact: Elizabeth Earley: Elizabeth.Earley@CHKD.org or (757) 668-9049

CHKD Receives $45,000 Grant from Rite Aid Healthy Futures To Improve Local Families’ Access to Food and Nutritional Resources

 NORFOLK, Va. – Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters has received a $45,000 grant from Rite Aid Healthy Futures, designed to help expand equitable care and improve health outcomes for children in underserved and vulnerable neighborhoods.

The funding comes through the charity’s Connecting Communities signature initiative and is part of an overall $3 million investment in more than 30 children’s hospitals serving Rite Aid communities.

The goal of Connecting Communities is to help major institutions like children’s hospitals collaborate with the neighborhoods around them in new and deeper ways, and ultimately connect people and places with the resources needed to advance health and racial equity.  

Initial funding will support a wide range of hospitals and their community-based programs across 15 states. Funded programs concentrate on screening for food insecurity, food distribution, and nutrition education, and aim to help eliminate root obstacles that keep communities from achieving health and wellness.

Locally, General Academic Pediatrics, a CHKD primary care practice located in Children’s Pavilion at 401 Gresham Drive, will take the lead on the grant, with screening to identify which patients and families  would benefit from a pantry bag of shelf stable food as well as assistance with referrals for food and other needs.

“Philanthropy helps provide not only lifesaving medical care, but also the strong support services children and families need to help stay healthy,” said Kate Ryan, philanthropy officer at CHKD. “We are extremely grateful to Rite Aid Healthy Futures for recognizing this need and partnering with us to create healthier futures for our patients.”

The grants are funded through Rite Aid’s KidCents fundraising program. Generous Rite Aid customers can round up their purchases online or in-store to support children’s health and wellness. Healthy Futures reinvests the funds into Rite Aid communities through programs like Connecting Communities.


“Expanding equitable care doesn’t start in the emergency room. It starts in our neighborhoods,” said Matt DeCamara, executive director of Rite Aid Healthy Futures. “Though the needs are great, so are the opportunities for progress. Children’s hospitals already play a critical role delivering vital medical care, and many of these institutions have developed impactful programs to serve kids, families and communities in ways that extend beyond traditional medical care. Working together, we can ensure everyone has what they need to live longer, healthier lives.”

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Rite Aid Healthy Futures, formerly known as The Rite Aid Foundation, is a public charity dedicated to driving change in communities, with emphasis on underserved neighborhoods, focusing on the areas of health, wellness, race and equity. Together with our donors, Rite Aid associates, community partners and neighbors, we help lift up local neighborhoods through caring actions and investments that make a real difference in people’s lives. Healthy Futures is proud to be affiliated with Rite Aid, which provides an array of whole being health products and services for the entire family through over 2,000 retail pharmacy locations across 17 states. Visit www.RiteAidHealthyFutures.org to learn more.

 

CHKD is the only freestanding children’s hospital in Virginia and serves the medical and surgical needs of children throughout greater Hampton Roads, the Eastern Shore of Virginia, and northeastern North Carolina. The not-for-profit CHKD Health System operates primary care pediatric practices, surgical practices, multi-service health centers, urgent care centers, and satellite offices throughout its service region. In 2019, CHKD broke ground on a 60-bed, 14-story hospital and outpatient center on its campus to address the mental health crisis facing our youth. The new tower on CHKD’s campus in Norfolk will open in 2022. Learn more at CHKD.org.

 

Rite Aid Healthy Futures Media Contact

Andrew Staub, Communications Manager

Rite Aid Healthy Futures

Andrew.Staub@riteaid.com

717-649-2437 (Text messages OK)

 

 

 

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Thursday, April 21, 2022
Contact: Elizabeth Earley: Elizabeth.Earley@CHKD.org or (757) 668-9049

General Academic Pediatrics, Sports Medicine and Outpatient Mental Health Care Begin in Children's Pavilion Week of April 25

NORFOLK, Va. – Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters is proud to announce that its 14-story Children’s Pavilion will open on April 25, starting with outpatient services before launching its highly anticipated inpatient psychiatric care later in the year.

 

The community rallied behind CHKD’s decision to build the $224 million building in response to the growing need for pediatric mental health services in our region. The innovative, color- and light-filled environment for healing will eventually include 60 inpatient psychiatric beds, along with primary care pediatrics, sports medicine, outpatient mental health services, and support services. The goal is to provide an environment that integrates access to mental health services into other routine services to de-stigmatize mental health treatment.

General Academic Pediatrics, a CHKD primary care practice, will begin treating patients in Children’s Pavilion on April 25, moving from the first floor of CHKD’s main hospital on the same campus to the 4th floor of Children’s Pavilion at 401 Gresham Drive.

Pediatric psychiatrists, psychologists, nurse practitioners, and mental health therapists will be providing outpatient mental health care beginning the same day on the 9th floor of Children’s Pavilion. Children in need of emergency mental health treatment will continue to go to the emergency department in the main CHKD hospital.

Sports medicine physicians who specialize in athletic, exercise, musculoskeletal and sports related injuries or pain will begin treating patients on April 28 on the 5th floor of Children's Pavilion.

Laboratory and radiology services will also be available in Children's Pavilion this week.

Meanwhile, work is continuing at a fast pace on around-the-clock inpatient services with final interior work and staff recruitment of professionals from across the country advancing simultaneously. CHKD will invite the media to tour the Pavilion and host a dedication ceremony later this year before opening its first inpatient beds.

CHKD launched a mental health initiative in 2018 to answer the growing community concern about a lack of pediatric mental health services in Hampton Roads and across Virginia. Since then, CHKD has grown its mental health team from one full-time child and adolescent psychiatrist who was part of a 30-member team to its current 11 psychiatrists on a team of more than 200.

Thanks to the generous community response to our Lighting the Way fundraising campaign, construction of Children’s Pavilion began in September of 2019. The 60 private rooms will open in phases with the first beds opening later this year. The rooms, which have space for a parent to spend the night, and large windows with stunning views of the region’s waterways, were designed to keep patients safe without feeling restricted. The inpatient area will also have healing amenities like music and art rooms, an indoor exercise gym, and a rooftop area where hospitalized children can get exercise and fresh air.

The community has raised $65 million toward this project through the Lighting the Way campaign, exceeding a preliminary goal which has now been elevated to $75 million to meet the increased needs for pediatric mental health care that arose during the pandemic. To help CHKD fulfill the needs of the community, visit this Lighting the Way link

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CHKD is the only freestanding children’s hospital in Virginia and serves the medical and surgical needs of children throughout greater Hampton Roads, the Eastern Shore of Virginia, and northeastern North Carolina. The not-for-profit CHKD Health System operates primary care pediatric practices, surgical practices, multi-service health centers, urgent care centers, and satellite offices throughout its service region. In 2019, CHKD broke ground on Children's Pavilion, a 60-bed, 14-story hospital and outpatient center to address the mental health crisis facing our youth. The new tower being built on CHKD’s campus in Norfolk is scheduled to open in 2022. Learn more at CHKD.org.

 

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Tuesday, April 12, 2022
Contact: Elizabeth Earley: Elizabeth.Earley@CHKD.org or (757) 668-9049

Howard Hanna to Donate $500,000 to CHKD’s Mental Health Initiative

NORFOLK, Va. – Howard Hanna Children’s Free Care Fund has donated the first $100,000 of a five-year, $500,000 donation to support a mental health initiative at Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters. 

The Howard Hanna Children’s Free Care Fund partners with children’s hospitals across the country, with regional Howard Hanna Real Estate offices raising donations for their local hospital. Thanks to the fundraising efforts of Howard Hanna’s southeast region, the organization presented CHKD with a check of over $100,000 early this month, with more payments planned during the next four years.

The generous donation will support CHKD’s transformative Children’s Pavilion, a 14-story tower currently under construction on the same Norfolk campus as its main hospital. The building will have 60 private inpatient beds for psychiatric treatment that will begin opening later this year. Children’s Pavilion, located on Gresham Drive, will also feature healing amenities like creative expression spaces for music and art therapy, an indoor gym, and a rooftop recreation center where hospitalized children can get exercise and fresh air.

The new building will open to some services this spring, including a pediatric practice, sports medicine, and outpatient mental health care. The goal is to provide an environment that integrates access to mental health services into other routine services in order to de-stigmatize the identification and treatment of psychiatric conditions within the pediatric population. Inpatient services will begin later in the year.

To learn more about the mental health initiative, visit this Lighting the Way link

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CHKD is the only freestanding children’s hospital in Virginia and serves the medical and surgical needs of children throughout greater Hampton Roads, the Eastern Shore of Virginia, and northeastern North Carolina. The not-for-profit CHKD Health System operates primary care pediatric practices, surgical practices, multi-service health centers, urgent care centers, and satellite offices throughout its service region. In 2019, CHKD broke ground on a 60-bed, 14-story hospital and outpatient center on its campus to address the mental health crisis facing our youth. The new tower being built on CHKD’s campus in Norfolk is scheduled to open in 2022. Learn more at CHKD.org.

 

 

 

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Thursday, March 10, 2022
Contact: Elizabeth Earley: Elizabeth.Earley@CHKD.org or (757) 668-9049

Fortify Children’s Health a Winner in National Challenge to Increase Pediatric Vaccinations and Well-Child Visits

The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services announced on January 31, 2022, that Fortify Children’s Health, Virginia’s first pediatric clinically integrated network, was among 20 winners of the Promoting Pediatric Primary Prevention (P4) Challenge, a nationwide competition to increase pediatric vaccination rates and well-child visits.  

Fortify Children’s Health (Fortify), which is comprised of more than 800 pediatric providers from 11 participating healthcare entities, including  Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters, the University of Virginia, and independent pediatric providers across the state, has a powerful population health platform that provides meaningful data that can be integrated within the clinician’s electronic medical record to highlight care gaps for the adolescents in our care at the point of service. Jointly engaging social media and utilizing the electronic tools already in place, Fortify worked to facilitate outreach to teens enrolled in Medicaid in our community to increase well-care visits.

“Fortify Children’s Health is dedicated to helping our clinical care teams reach out to our adolescents to engage them with their healthcare team and ensure they receive the preventive well care they need to support their physical and emotional well-being,” said Dr. Suzanne Brixey, Executive Director of Fortify. 

Final P4 winners represent the diversity of the country and include mobile vaccination projects, Head Start partnerships, primary care texting strategies, and targeted support for children supported by resource families. Challenge projects generated more than 52,000 pediatric well-child visits and nearly 23,000 immunizations. 

“Among the many impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic has been a decline in routine pediatric immunizations and well-child visits, which threatens to undermine the significant progress we’ve made in children’s health,” said HRSA Administrator Carole Johnson. “Our HRSA Challenge initiative focused on generating creative approaches and meaningful results in helping to get children vaccinated, see their provider, and stay healthy.” 

Fifty teams received an initial award of $10,000 and six months to develop their proposed concept.  On January 31, HHS announced the 20 teams that received a final $25,000 prize.  Winners include health centers, pediatric clinics, children’s hospitals, and community organizations.  Applications were reviewed by a panel of expert judges and were evaluated based on their approach to increasing well-child visits, increasing vaccinations, and reducing disparities among populations. 

For a list of addition P4 Challenge winners, visit:  https://mchb.hrsa.gov/funding/challenge-competitions/p4challenge/our-20-final-winners. To learn more about the P4 Challenge, visit:  https://mchb.hrsa.gov/funding/challenge-competitions/p4challenge.

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CHKD is the only freestanding children’s hospital in Virginia and serves the medical and surgical needs of children throughout greater Hampton Roads, the Eastern Shore of Virginia, and northeastern North Carolina. The not-for-profit CHKD Health System operates primary care pediatric practices, surgical practices, multi-service health centers, urgent care centers, and satellite offices throughout its service region. In 2019, CHKD broke ground on a 60-bed, 14-story hospital and outpatient center on its campus to address the mental health crisis facing our youth. The new tower being built on CHKD’s campus in Norfolk is scheduled to open in 2022. Learn more at  CHKD.org.

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Tuesday, March 1, 2022
Contact: Elizabeth Earley: Elizabeth.Earley@CHKD.org or (757) 668-9049

CHKD Renovates Hospital Units to Address Mental and Medical Needs of Children

NORFOLK, Va. – Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters has renovated two units in its main hospital to bring interdisciplinary services to patients in need of both medical and mental health care.

A new seven-bed “medical-psychiatric” unit that opened in January cares for patients in need of both medical and mental health care. This coordinated approach is for children who have a primary medical diagnosis and who also need concurrent treatment for mental health concerns. For instance, children who need to be hospitalized due to an eating disorder or a medication overdose will be able to begin psychiatric treatment while their primary medical diagnosis is being stabilized. Other examples include children requiring an admission to CHKD for a chronic medical condition like asthma or diabetes who also need therapeutic interventions for emotional or behavioral concerns.

The rooms are private and are designed with safety as a priority, recognizing that children in mental health crisis may be more vulnerable to endangering themselves or others. A multipurpose room on the unit provides a space for mental health treatment such as group therapy, coping skill development, and mindfulness training. The unit also includes a designated calming room where music, textured wall surfaces, and other techniques can be used to facilitate the de-escalation of emotions and behaviors.

Nursing and mental health staff are specially trained to work together to help this vulnerable population receive the services they need. “It’s a unique setting where mental health care is integrated into everyday medical interventions,” said Rachel Andam-Mejia, MSN, RN, nursing director of patient care services at CHKD.

The medical-psychiatric unit in the main hospital will serve as a bridge for children to begin psychiatric treatment while receiving medical care at CHKD. “There is downtime during inpatient medical treatment when the child is recovering in bed, and we’re now able to use that time to provide mental health care, such as teaching coping skills,” said Dr. Daniel Spencer, associate chief of psychiatry and mental health services at CHKD. “It’s a whole-child, integrated approach that helps children while they are here, and also gives them skills for when they go home again.”

At the same time, CHKD also renovated its emergency department to create a six-bed area designated for patients who arrive in mental health crisis. This area also was designed to keep patients, family members, and staff safe, and to give patients more privacy. The area will be staffed with a registered nurse, a mental health therapist, a mental health coach, and a mental health technician to meet the patients’ needs.

This mental-health-focused renovation to the main hospital is a critical component of CHKD’s overall mental health initiative, the centerpiece of which is a 14-story tower currently under construction on the same Norfolk campus as its main hospital. The building, which is named Children’s Pavilion, will have 60 private inpatient beds for psychiatric treatment that will begin opening later this year. Children’s Pavilion, located on Gresham Drive, will also be the hub of a comprehensive mental health outpatient program. Children’s Pavilion will also feature healing amenities like creative expression spaces for music and art therapy, an indoor gym and a rooftop recreation center where hospitalized children can get exercise and fresh air.

The new building will open this spring with outpatient services including primary care pediatrics and CHKD’s sports medicine program. The goal is to provide an environment that integrates access to mental health services into other routine services in order to de-stigmatize the identification and treatment of psychiatric conditions within the pediatric population. Inpatient psychiatric services are expected to begin in the fall.

While Children’s Pavilion has been under construction, the mental health team has already expanded and is treating more children than ever. Since the mental health initiative was launched in 2018, CHKD has grown its mental health team from one full-time child and adolescent psychiatrist who was part of a 30-member team to 12 psychiatrists on a team of more than 100. The number of mental health visits and consultations has grown from 14,385 in 2018 to 25,745 during fiscal year 2021.

This mental health initiative is unfolding at a time when 20 percent of the nation’s children have a diagnosable mental health condition, and during a pandemic that has fueled anxiety and depression in children because of social isolation, along with illness, death, and job loss in their families. The urgency of the need was highlighted by the U.S. Surgeon General in December when he issued an advisory about the nation’s youth mental health crisis, acknowledging the pandemic has only worsened a long-standing escalation of pediatric mental health needs and a shortage of resources to address the epidemic.

CHKD is answering this call to action by expanding its mental health program as rapidly as possible, even while addressing the challenges of a pandemic. Still, many families continue to wait for these services. Your support is critical to this initiative. The community has raised $61 million toward this project through the Lighting the Way campaign, exceeding a preliminary goal which has now been elevated to $75 million to help CHKD fulfill the needs of the community. To learn more about the mental health initiative, visit this Lighting the Way link

NR - Med Psych Unit 1

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Thursday, January 13, 2022
Contact: Elizabeth Earley: Elizabeth.Earley@CHKD.org or (757) 668-9049

CHKD Announces Partnership with Unite Us to Connect Patients to Resources

NORFOLK, Va. –  Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters is partnering with  Unite Us, the enterprise technology company providing the digital infrastructure to power integrated health and social care ecosystems to expand the transformative coordinated care network known as Unite Virginia.

This collaboration strengthens a commitment to create healthier communities and improve the quality of life for Virginians most in need. The Unite Us Platform creates a single space where CHKD can connect patients to local health, human, and community-based organizations to address whole-person care across sectors. 

Research has shown that social determinants of health – the conditions in which people live, work, and learn – have a significant and lasting impact on health outcomes that cannot be addressed by access to health care alone. Together, CHKD and Unite Us will elevate social care to the same level as health care to improve whole-person care across the state. It is important that community organizations partner together to address these aspects of family health. We seek to foster equitable health in our community and address health disparities magnified by the impact of COVID-19 on underserved populations.

“We are extremely happy to partner with Unite Us to provide critical resources to our underserved children and their families,” said Jim Dahling, president and CEO of CHKD. “This partnership will allow us to further support our long-time mission to improve the health of our neighbors in need. Providing these resources as early as possible in children’s lives improves their chances for success.”

Unite Virginia is built in partnership with the Office of the Virginia Secretary of Health and Human Resources, the Virginia Department of Health, Optima Health, Partnering for a Healthy Virginia, Kaiser Permanente, Virginia Mental Health Access Program, Virginia Department of Social Services, and Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association.

“The collective goal of our partnership with Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters is to effectively increase equitable access to care for Virginia residents regardless of circumstance. Together, these much-needed resources and services will redefine the quality, impact, and intersection of whole-person care across this community,” said Jacqueline Hale, Virginia State Director, Unite Us.

The Unite Us footprint in Virginia began in 2016 in partnership with the United Way of South Hampton Roads.

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CHKD is the only freestanding children’s hospital in Virginia and serves the medical and surgical needs of children throughout greater Hampton Roads, the Eastern Shore of Virginia, and northeastern North Carolina. The not-for-profit CHKD Health System operates primary care pediatric practices, surgical practices, multi-service health centers, urgent care centers, and satellite offices throughout its service region. In 2019, CHKD broke ground on a 60-bed, 14-story mental health hospital and outpatient center on its campus to address the mental health crisis facing our youth. The new tower being built on CHKD’s campus in Norfolk is scheduled to open in 2022. Learn more at  CHKD.org.

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Wednesday, December 15, 2021
Contact: Savannah Lentz (803)883-6628 slentz@mergeworld.com

Hampton Roads Healthcare Organizations Encourage Community Blood Donations

Hampton Roads, VA-- (December 14, 2021)-- Healthcare organizations across Hampton Roads are
encouraging all those eligible to donate blood to their local American Red Cross location. As part of a
collective effort to give back to the American Red Cross this holiday season, Bon Secours, Children’s
Hospital of The King’s Daughters, Chesapeake Regional Healthcare, Riverside Health System and
Sentara Healthcare are asking everyone to support their local chapter and donate blood.


Every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood due to surgery, illness, or a traumatic injury. The
COVID-19 pandemic has increased this demand nationally, and here at home in Hampton Roads. At
this time, Hampton Roads healthcare organizations are being supplied with a lower amount of blood
supplies this year as the state experiences a reduction in donations by 41 percent this year compared
to last year. Local healthcare leaders are continuing to monitor blood supplies and remain prepared to
care for all patients. With much of the local blood supply coming from the American Red Cross,
lifesaving efforts performed at local healthcare organizations can only happen when residents make
a generous blood donation. Just one donation can save up to three lives and help replenish our local
supplies.


“We can only deliver lifesaving blood to area hospitals with the support of our community,” said
Jonathan McNamara, Communications Director for the American Red Cross Virginia Region. “There is
no substitute for the local blood donors and volunteers who support our blood drives and as we move
through the holiday season, we hope people join us in helping to build a more resilient blood supply.”

All blood donations are performed in a safe and healthy environment. In addition to normal
adherence to sterile practices, Red Cross employees are following COVID-19 safety protocols at
donation centers and blood drives:


● Requiring face masks
● Wiping down donor-touched areas after every collection
● Providing hand sanitizer for use before entering and throughout the donation appointment
● Ensuring temperature checks are conducted on donors before they enter the blood drive or
donation center
● Monitoring social distancing practices between donors including donor beds, waiting and
refreshment areas

The Red Cross hosts blood drives daily throughout our Hampton Roads communities. To support The
American Red Cross and your local healthcare community, please donate blood today. Find your
nearest donation center by entering your zip code at
https://www.redcrossblood.org/give.html/find-drive.

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Tuesday, December 14, 2021
Contact: Elizabeth Earley: Elizabeth.Earley@CHKD.org or (757) 668-9049

Bank of America Donates $1 Million to CHKD's New Mental Health Hospital

NORFOLK, Va. –  Bank of America announced today the company is contributing $1 million to CHKD's new mental health hospital, matching its largest-ever donation to the Hampton Roads region.

This recent donation builds on the company’s decades-long relationship with CHKD and recognizes the transformative nature of CHKD’s mental health initiative. The cornerstone of this endeavor is a $224 million, 60-bed mental health facility scheduled to open next year, bringing the expertise of dozens of child and adolescent psychiatric professionals who will make CHKD their home for treating the children of the Hampton Roads region and beyond.

“The new facility at CHKD is going to be transformative for our region, and a big win in terms of access to quality mental health care for children,” said Frank Castellanos, Bank of America President of Hampton Roads. “We’ve supported the efforts of CHKD for four decades. The values they exhibit through the work they do are inspiring, and align with our commitment to the health and safety of vulnerable populations.”

The 14-story mental health hospital is currently under construction on the same campus as the main CHKD hospital and will have private psychiatric rooms with space for parents to spend the night, healing amenities such as music and art rooms, and a rooftop area where hospitalized children can get exercise and fresh air. The new hospital will be the hub of a regional mental health outpatient program, with a continuum of care from early intervention to outpatient care to more intensive treatment.

Bank of America’s support will be recognized in the new building within a space devoted to General Academic Pediatrics, a CHKD primary care practice deeply committed to treating children and families with limited access to health care and other resources. CHKD’s new mental health hospital will feature services such as primary care for children so that coming to the new tower for mental health treatment will be as routine and accepted as accessing routine health care. It is part of CHKD’s goal in Lighting the Way for mental health for children and easing stigma.

“This gift from Bank of America is a testament to the company’s compassion for the children and families in the Hampton Roads region and the Commonwealth of Virginia,” said CHKD President and CEO Jim Dahling. “The gift will support some of the most vulnerable members of our community and contribute to advancing the science around treating mental health conditions for children across the country.”

The generosity of this grant recognizes the need for improved access to mental health services in the region and state, along with services that can bridge health disparities throughout the community.

This mental health initiative is unfolding at a time when 20 percent of the nation’s children have a diagnosable mental health condition, and during a pandemic that has fueled anxiety and depression of children because of social isolation, along with illness, death, and job loss among families.

Once it is fully operating, the CHKD mental health hospital will employ more than 400 doctors, nurses, therapists, and other mental health professionals who will treat thousands of children across the state and beyond. In a far-reaching aspect of the initiative, a fellowship training program for child and adolescent psychiatrists also is being developed to train mental health providers. This critical program will improve access to care in Hampton Roads and also help address the extreme shortage of child and adolescent psychiatrists across the country. 

Mental Health Building - North View


About CHKD

CHKD is the only freestanding children’s hospital in Virginia and serves the medical and surgical needs of children throughout greater Hampton Roads, the Eastern Shore of Virginia, and northeastern North Carolina. The not-for-profit CHKD Health System operates primary care pediatric practices, surgical practices, multi-service health centers, urgent care centers, and satellite offices throughout its service region. In 2019, CHKD broke ground on a 60-bed, 14-story mental health hospital and outpatient center on its campus to address the mental health crisis facing our youth. The new tower being built on CHKD’s campus in Norfolk is scheduled to open in 2022. 

About Bank of America

At Bank of America, we’re guided by a common purpose to help make financial lives better, through the power of every connection. We’re delivering on this through responsible growth with a focus on our environmental, social, and governance (ESG) leadership. ESG is embedded across our eight lines of business and reflects how we help fuel the global economy, build trust and credibility, and represent a company that people want to work for, invest in and do business with. It’s demonstrated in the inclusive and supportive workplace we create for our employees, the responsible products and services we offer our clients, and the impact we make around the world in helping local economies thrive. An important part of this work is forming strong partnerships with nonprofits and advocacy groups, such as community, consumer, and environmental organizations, to bring together our collective networks and expertise to achieve greater impact. Connect with us on Twitter - @BofA_News.

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Thursday, November 18, 2021
Contact: Elizabeth Earley at Elizabeth.Earley@CHKD.org or (757) 668-9049

94.9 The Point’s Radiothon raised more than $220,000 for CHKD

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. – 94.9 The Point’s Radiothon raised more than $220,000 for CHKD during its 20th annual event to benefit the pediatric health system, and the second during a pandemic.

Rather than the usual live broadcast from CHKD’s lobby, The Point’s morning show hosts Mike Powers and Woo Woo aired inspirational interviews with patients and CHKD professionals from the radio station’s Virginia Beach studio to reduce risk of COVID-19 exposure to the children and others.


Since its beginning 20 years ago, 94.9 The Point Radiothon has raised more than $5 million to purchase equipment, fund research, support patient care programs, and expand our mental health program.

Many thanks to this year’s Radiothon sponsors: Geico Philanthropic Foundation, Langley Federal Credit Union, Kroger, STIHL, Ford Dealers’ Association, JPMorgan Chase, Cavalier Ford Greenbrier, The CHAS Foundation, Stephanie Clark Real Estate, Precision Measurements, Freckles Graphics, Jimmy John’s.

The community’s outpouring of support of CHKD through the Radiothon is a testament to your trust in our team of doctors, nurses, social workers, child life specialists, and many others dedicated to providing the best care to children of all ages.

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CHKD is the only freestanding children’s hospital in Virginia and serves the medical and surgical needs of children throughout greater Hampton Roads, the Eastern Shore of Virginia, and northeastern North Carolina. The not-for-profit CHKD Health System operates primary care pediatric practices, surgical practices, multi-service health centers, urgent care centers, and satellite offices throughout its service region. In 2019, CHKD broke ground on a 60-bed, 14-story mental health hospital and outpatient center on its campus to address the mental health crisis facing our youth. The new tower being built on CHKD’s campus in Norfolk is scheduled to open in 2022. Learn more at  CHKD.org.

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(757) 668-6960