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Nemours Children's Hospital Takes Major Step Toward Seeing Patients This Fall

Staff receives green light to move into facility.

Monday, Jul 16, 2012

Nemours Children's Hospital, Orlando

Although Nemours Children’s Hospital will not see its first patient until October 22, this morning, for the first time, newly hired Associates reported to the hospital for training. It was their first day on the job.

Nemours just received the certificate of occupancy for the hospital from the City of Orlando. For the next three months, medical staff will train in the brand new, state-of-the-art children’s hospital in preparation for the specialized care they will provide Central Florida’s children on opening day.

At a ceremony this morning, Fred Hames, Executive Vice President and General Manager of Skanska Florida turned over the “keys” to the facility to CEO, Roger Oxendale who then welcomed the first 160 employees into the building for the very first time. That team will now go through orientation before making themselves at home in the new hospital.

“A lot of hard work has gone into making today a reality,” said Oxendale. “Skanska has been an excellent partner and has shared our vision – to build a hospital like no other that will improve health care for children and families in Central Florida and beyond.”

Central Florida parents helped select the doctors and leaders who reported to work on Monday. Members of the Nemours Family Advisory Council (FAC) have been interviewing finalists for positions. This innovative approach helps ensure that a candidate truly sees families as just as important as any other member of the care team. The FAC is made up of local moms and dads, many of whom have children with chronic health conditions, which provides them with extensive experience with the pediatric health system.

“This is the first time I have been interviewed by a parent,” said Dr. Steven Frick, Chair of Orthopedics Surgery at Nemours Children’s Hospital. “The process really speaks to Nemours’ commitment to providing family-centered care. It tells me that the parent’s voice is just as important as the rest of our medical teams’,” said Frick.

In February, Nemours Children’s Hospital posted 596 positions to their careers website. The positions ranged from administrative assistants to physicians and nurses. Nemours has exceeded its expectations both with the numbers and quality of the new hires. Currently, close to 500 of the critical and front line positions have been filled.

Throughout the hiring process, Nemours received more than 35,000 resumes – only two percent of those candidates secured a position. Although this has not been an easy feat, the recruiting team at Nemours identified the best candidates and trained hiring managers in ‘behavioral interviewing’ which helps determine if a candidate is a good cultural and behavioral fit for the organization.

“We feel very good about the quality and caliber of experience these associates are bringing to the area,” said Rick Kennedy, Nemours senior human resources business partner. “They were drawn in by Nemours’ reputation as a leading pediatric healthcare provider and they are very excited to be a part of something new.”

Every week a new group of Associates will come through the hospital to train until all 850 employees are in place for the opening.

About Nemours

Nemours is an internationally recognized children's health system that owns and operates the two free-standing children’s hospitals: the Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, Del., and Nemours Children's Hospital in Orlando, Fla., along with outpatient facilities in five states, delivering pediatric primary, specialty and urgent care. Nemours also powers the world’s most-visited website for information on the health of children and teens,, and offers on-demand, online video patient visits through Nemours CareConnect. Nemours is a program dedicated to preventing reading failure in young children, grounded in Nemours’ understanding that child health and learning are inextricably linked, and that reading level is a strong predictor of adult health.

Established as The Nemours Foundation through the legacy and philanthropy of Alfred I. duPont, Nemours provides pediatric clinical care, research, education, advocacy and prevention programs to families in the communities it serves.