School Nurses Make the Grade

School nurses can certainly help kids feel better. But can they also help kids do better in school? Packard Children’s studied the effects of putting health care back into schools, and found that—not surprisingly—better health leads to better grades.

Staff Get on Board for Commuter Alternatives

To reduce traffic congestion and encourage alternative modes of transportation, all employees of Packard Children’s were provided with Caltrain GO Passes at the beginning of the year. The Go Passes allow staff to ride Caltrain for free—encouraging the use of mass transportation for their commute to and from work. So far, more than 1,000 employees have taken part in the program and are riding the rails to cut back on commuter driving.

A Little Goes a Long Way

Sustainability is a driving force behind the hospital expansion project, which incorporates water-efficient systems, a 110,000-gallon cistern to store rainwater, and the use of drought-tolerant plants, such as native grasses, shrubs, and trees. The new expanses of green space and permeable paving will handle storm runoff better than paved areas.

Transforming Hospital Design

Several aspects of the Packard expansion project have been improved by the first-hand participation of physicians, nurses, multidisciplinary care teams, and parents. Their input and feedback has led to a number of important changes—before construction even begins.

How Does the Garden Grow?

For the children and expectant mothers who come to Packard Children’s, the new gardens will be a retreat where they can savor the sights, smells, and sounds of nature. The hospital is adding more than three acres of greenery, connecting the new facility to the existing one while providing a backdrop of calmness and serenity.

Setting Down New Roots

Trees on the site of the Packard Children’s Hospital expansion have been boxed and stored, and are ready to be replanted once the project is complete. Heritage trees have been preserved; 12 protected oaks and redwoods have been carefully prepared and put in safekeeping so they can be transplanted later, and four have already been relocated to new sites on the university campus to provide better growing conditions.