Health System and Children’s Hospital Join to Form Children’s Hospital

Pamela DiSalvo
Communications and Public Relations


The Commonwealth University Health System and Children’s Hospital haveficially joined to become Children’s Hospital

The new hospital will provide a unified source comprehensive, coordinated specialty pediatric care to children and their families at 10 locations throughout the greater area and in Fredericksburg.

Formal talks between the Health System and Children’s Hospital announced in March have concluded with an agreement that joins the operations the two organizations under the Health System umbrella.

“In the years ahead, we will look back on today as a milestone, an important step forward in providing coordinated and compassionate children’s health care in the area and beyond,” said Michael Rao, Ph.D., president and the Health System.  “Children’s health care always has been especially important to me. I am delighted to see our organizations come together to further advance the quality health care for our children now and in the future.”

“The agreement creates a unique children’s medical center in central with unparalleled scope and breadth,” added Dr. Sheldon Retchin, Health System CEO and vice president for Health Sciences.

Children’s Hospital will provide increased access to all levels health care for children — from well-child checks to advanced medical and surgical services for serious conditions to long-term care and therapy.  

“This union improves the coordination care for our young patients among all their health care providers,” said John Duval, CEO MCV Hospitals the Health System. “We are in a period transition that ultimately results in one set quality standards, one unified patient experience and one unified environment care.

“Our goal is nothing less than to be a nationally recognized children’s medical center,” Duval said.

More than 350 Children’s Hospital employees join the nearly 1,000 Health System employees dedicated to pediatric care, as well as an additional 1,200 Health System employees in medical and surgical specialties who care for children and adults. 

Children’s Hospital will include:

  • Six specialized inpatient units with 149 pediatric beds, including acute care, pediatric intensive care, neonatal intensive care and transitional care.
  • Thirty-five pediatric medical-surgical services including cardiology, developmental pediatrics, orthopedic surgery and other sub-specialties.
  • Nine therapy services such as audiology, assistive technology and physical, occupational and speech therapy.
  • Seven support service programs including child life/recreational therapy, pastoral care and social work, designed to complement medical and therapy services.

“The sum all these parts is impressive,” said Leslie Wyatt, president and CEO Children’s Hospital who will serve as vice president for Children’s Services, Health System. “Children’s Hospital fills a significant need in the area, which until now, was one only two metropolitan areas its size without a comprehensive children’s hospital.”

Officials said top children’s hospitals have strong links to an academic medical center, with established infrastructure for conducting basic science and clinical research and training pediatric health care providers. 

Dr. Bruce Rubin, chair the Department Pediatrics, said the union Children’s Hospital with the academic medical center facilitates the retention and recruitment additional top pediatric medical and surgical specialists and subspecialists. He said 30 the country’s best physicians and researchers will be hired over the next few years.

“These physicians and researchers will enable us to enhance and expand specialty services and research programs as well as strengthen our residency and fellowship training programs,” Rubin said. “We face increasing shortages pediatricians and pediatric specialists, so the education future pediatricians and pediatric specialists is particularly important.

“Now is the time to ensure the future for pediatric health care in the area and throughout central Virginia,” Rubin said.

For more information on Children’s Hospital , visit .