University of Kansas Hospital | 100 great hospitals in America 2016

University of Kansas Hospital (Kansas City). Founded in 1906 as part of the University of Kansas School of Medicine, this academic medical center is celebrating its 100th birthday this year. University of Kansas Hospital has changed significantly since its inception, especially in 1998. It became an independent hospital that year, receiving no state funding and spinning off from the university's school of medicine.

Throughout its storied history, the University of Kansas Hospital has earned several awards and recognitions of excellence. U.S. News & World Report named the hospital as No. 1 in the state and also ranked it nationally in 12 specialties. The hospital earned Magnet recognition for nursing excellence in 2006, a status it still holds today.

The hospital employs roughly 6,830 people and has 699 staffed beds, as of fiscal year 2013, but it is poised for growth. A building north of the existing hospital is expected to open in 2017, which will provide complex treatment options for more patients, according to the hospital. The new tower was originally planned to be seven stories high and house 92 beds, 28 intensive care beds and 12 operating rooms. The tower was designed create an option to add four more stories at a later time. However, expectations that the new tower will reach capacity right away have prompted hospital officials to plan to begin building the additional floors immediately after the first seven stories open to patients, adding an additional 32 beds on one floor and keeping the other three "shelled in" to prepare for future expansion. The total cost of the project is now estimated at $320 million.

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