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BIRMINGHAM (June 17, 2011) - As part of today's observance of the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Children's Hospital of Alabama, CEO Mike Warren announced that the organization's D/B/A (doing business as) name has changed to Children's of Alabama.
Warren made the announcement during a special event held in the hospital's main lobby that featured remarks by Walker Jones, whose grandmother, Caroline Johnson (Mrs. Crawford Johnson), helped found the hospital on June 17, 1911. Jones currently serves on Children's Board of Trustees. Twelve-year-old cancer patient Lindsey Jones (not related) of Gurley led guests and employees in singing "Happy Birthday."
Children's of Alabama replaces the previous D/B/A Children's Health System. The name change is intended to strengthen the geographic identification of Children's as the hospital's national reputation grows. Ten of its divisions - pulmonology, neurology and neurosurgery, orthopedics, urology, neonatology, cancer, cardiology, gastroenterology, endocrinology and nephrology -- were recently ranked in the Top 50 Children's Hospital Programs by U.S. News & World Report. Children's of Alabama is the only medical center in Alabama dedicated solely to the care and treatment of children and is one of the 10 busiest pediatric medical centers in the nation.
As previously announced, the Children's of Alabama expansion facility currently under construction will be named the Benjamin Russell Hospital for Children. It and several adjacent buildings are located at what will be known as the Russell Campus. The Children's of Alabama name refers to the entire network of inpatient and outpatient services provided on the Russell Campus, the Children's South Pediatric Outpatient Center near Acton Road and at other locations across the state.
Along with the organizational name change, a new logo was revealed during the 100th celebration. The updated mark retains the familiar red ball design but the silhouettes of children within reflect a more current look than the design the hospital has used since 1996.
"As we move into our second century of caring for the children of Alabama, we believe changing the organization's name and logo better reflects the significant role we play in our state and our commitment to the health of the youngsters who live here," said CEO Mike Warren. "It's a new mark for a new century."
The hospital's website URL has also changed; it can now be found at www.ChildrensAL.org. In addition, Children's social media outlets are being rebranded to include facebook.com/ChildrensofAlabama, twitter.com/ChildrensAL and youtube.com/ChildrensofAlabama.
History of Children's of Alabama
Founded as the Holy Innocents Hospital, Children's was intended to be, in the words of founder Rev. Carl Henckell, "a charity institution for children alone." Rev. Henckell, rector of All Saints Church, along with Rev. Raimundo de Ovies, rector of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, and Dr. James E. Dedman, the City of Birmingham's health officer, were responsible for starting Children's Hospital in 1911. The trio of men was touched by the plight of the area's many sick and needy children in desperate need of healthcare. Continued frustration over the inadequacy of healthcare available to children, especially those of poorer families, drove the group to action.
On June 17, 1911, a small group of Episcopalian men and women gathered to form the Holy Innocents Hospital Association Inc., under the patronage of the Protestant Episcopal Church of the Alabama Diocese. Due to the limited financial means of this organization, it was not possible to raise a building that would meet the requirements they foresaw, so they made the best use of the only existing building they could acquire, the All Saints Parish House. Shortly thereafter, the group rented a simple frame residence and converted it to a 12-bed hospital.
In 1913, under the leadership of Mrs. Crawford Johnson, the association raised enough money to enlarge and renovate the house and formally open the hospital's doors to the public. Soon Holy Innocents Hospital had a model kitchen with a nutrition program, a laboratory and three wards with space enough for 25 children from infancy through 15 years of age.
On July 2, 1924, a new brick structure on the southwest corner of 31st Street and 7th Avenue was built to accommodate 60 children. On March 9, 1925, Children's Hospital opened its first free clinic, a permanent "outpatient ward." In 1932, a second building increased bed capacity by 50 and added urgently needed surgical facilities.
On April 30, 1961, the first patients were moved to the hospital's present location at 1600 7th Avenue South. That year, Children's entered a unique agreement with nearby University Hospital and the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Department of Pediatrics whereby Children's would provide its pediatric care while serving as a learning and teaching resource for the University of Alabama School of Medicine.
About Children's of Alabama
Children's of Alabama is a private, not-for-profit hospital that serves as the primary site of the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) pediatric medicine, surgery, research and residency programs. It is governed by a volunteer board of trustees. It is home to Alabama's only Level I pediatric trauma center, a leading pediatric hematology/oncology center, the state's only pediatric blood and marrow transplant program and the only pediatric burn center in the southeastern U.S. Children's of Alabama is recognized by the American Nurses Credentialing Center as a Magnet-designated hospital for its excellence of nursing care. A 760,000-square-feet expansion facility is currently under construction and expected to open mid-2012. For more information, visit www.ChildrensAL.org, facebook.com/ChildrensofAlabama or twitter.com/ChildrensAL.