Are Changes Coming For Women & Children's Hospital?

February 10, 2012 Updated Feb 10, 2012 at 1:48 PM EDT

By WKBW News

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February 10, 2012 Updated Feb 10, 2012 at 1:48 PM EDT

Buffalo, N.Y. (WKBW) - Is there a change on the way for Women and Children's Hospital of Buffalo?

The change could mean a big move for the medical facility.

There is a proposal to relocate to the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, something that was proposed nearly 10 years ago.

Pediatrician and Medical Director for Physician Outreach at Children's, Doctor Steven Lana, said moving the hospital was not the way to go at that time. He and others fought against this move at a rally.

"At that time it didn't make sense to move hospital. The footprint that was available would not have provided enough space. We didn't think that the circumstances were right, or the financial state Kaleida was in at that time, being $80 million in the red, so it didn't make it credible that we could pull it off," Lana said.

They thought just renovating the hospital would be a better choice at that time.

"It was a facility that was aging at different stages. Some of it was state of the art, but the parts that provided the lion share of patients was well over 100 years old in some places," Lana said.

As the years passed, circumstances have changed and Dr. Lana said so have his thoughts about the proposal.

"Now, what has changed is that all the factors we used to make that decision are changed for the better. We have a much larger parcel of land, and Kaleida has built trust with the physicians with a track record of completing projects," Lana said.

Lana said it will be an involved, but fast-paced project. Part of that procedure includes input from the community surrounding the current Children's Hospital and the Medical Campus. In fact, The City of Buffalo Planning Board has put a public comment period in place until March 23.

"The process is going to be one that is aggressive in terms of the timeline. We're not talking about 10 years in to the future, we're talking three to four years into the future. Public input is requested along with fund raising, there still is a lot to be done," Lana said.

Lana said the bottom line is the patients in the hospital.

"This is a very exciting time and it's the first step toward achieving that dream and vision of having everything on one campus so we can offer our patients a state of the art facility," Lana said.