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A Look Inside Soliant’s 2019 Most Beautiful Hospital in the U.S.

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Ten years ago Soliant set out to find the Most Beautiful Hospital in the country – a hospital that encompassed every meaning of the word beauty. This year, Pipestone County Medical Center & Family Clinic Avera in Pipestone, Minnesota was named Soliant’s 2019 Most Beautiful Hospital. From the people who work hard inside the hospital day in and day out to the programs that support the health of the patients, this hospital truly embodies beauty. We spoke with a representative from Pipestone County Medical Center to find out what makes their hospital so beautiful and what puts the heart behind their hospital.

Q. In your own words, what makes your hospital so beautiful?

A. Our building is undoubtedly beautiful, with stunning architecture throughout and attention to detail that is truly patient-focused. None of the aesthetic beauty matters, though, without the skill, caring, and compassion that our staff brings to the table every day. That’s the beauty that matters the most, and we are blessed to have it in abundance here at PCMC.

Q. What is the most important factor in creating a healthy, happy staff?

A. We have developed a culture where we support one another, where we value hard work, and where we serve each other every day. PCMC is a team, and everyone on this team brings valuable insight and experience to the table – and we all share a commitment to providing the best possible care for our patients.

Q. What programs or initiatives do you have in place that make Pipestone such a unique and special place?

A. PCMC does, indeed, have many specialized programs that are not found elsewhere in the area, such as Lymphedema Therapy, Hippotherapy, and special therapy for patients with Parkinson’s disease. Our on-campus residential hospice house provides end-of-life care to the community. On-site dialysis provides services to many in the greater surrounding area. A robust volunteer program is supported by many volunteers from the community who are willing to assist in all areas of the hospital campus. PCMC greatly supports and is engaged with our community, schools, and youth through programs such as athletic training and a presence at sporting events. We have staff who are committed to local organizations such as the Chamber of Commerce, Kiwanis, and the Pipestone Area Coalition. And employee recognition initiatives are an important part of promoting employee engagement within the facility.

Q. How does Pipestone prioritize their patient’s health?

A. Meeting the health needs of our patients is always our top priority. To do that effectively, we believe it is essential to invest in our people and our infrastructure regularly. We are committed to bringing the best and most qualified medical professionals to PCMC, and we are equally committed to retaining and training those who are already a part of our team so that they can grow. We’ve invested in the people of our region through the completion of our new clinic/hospital, and we continue to ensure that our patients have access to state-of-the-art technology – like our new artificial intelligence-driven 3D mammography service – which is one of only two in the state of Minnesota.

Q. From a physical standpoint, what physical features of your hospital promote healing for your patients?

A. Our spacious patient rooms offer a sense of being ‘at home’. There is room for family and friends to be a part of the healing experience; to visit and give encouragement. Patient rooms and other areas are enhanced with large windows that give way to lots of natural light. Artwork and finishing colors throughout the facility are soft and calming.

Q. What does this recognition mean for your hospital and the Pipestone community?

A. Pipestone is a tight-knit community that has an excellent relationship with its hospital. All of Pipestone County rallied around this contest, as did the PCMC employees and their families, investing countless hours and millions of mouse-clicks into winning a competition that brings national exposure to our small corner of the world. We are so very proud to have earned this award, and the people here take personal ownership in it because they are the ones who made it happen. It truly brought the community together, and it will help to shed light on what an incredible hospital we have here and on the vital importance of rural hospitals in America today.

Congratulations again to Pipestone County Medical Center & Family Clinic Avera for their accomplishment. We know they will continue to do beautiful things everyday.

See the full list of this year’s Top 20 Most Beautiful Hospitals in the U.S. here. And make sure to stay on the lookout for when nominations open for the 2020 Most Beautiful Hospital next year!

A Look Inside Soliant’s 2018 Most Beautiful Hospital in the U.S.

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The thought of undergoing surgery is scary enough for an adult. Imagine what it’s like for a child. Stark white walls, cold empty hallways, and cramped waiting rooms are far from healing. As patients, a “home away from home” experience is what we want but it’s not always what we get. The people of Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida are doing everything they can to make this experience a reality for children and their families.

What some may consider bells and whistles are just the essentials for Golisano: large televisions and gaming consoles in each room, iPads loaded with kid-friendly games and programs for patients to use, and sleeper sofas so that parents and caregivers can stay the night with their child. Not to mention, all patient rooms are private and designed in a way that nurses can supervise through windows, limiting both noise and interruptions.

“We encourage family-centered care by providing private rooms, including in the NICU. We also have a Ronald McDonald Family Room, which provides free on-the-go meals as well as free laundry services to families,” said Anna Stephanz, BS, CCLS, Certified Child Life Specialist at Golisano. “If a patient is hospitalized during their birthday or a holiday, our child life specialists create a celebratory environment for them.”


Upon arrival at Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida, children are greeted with a stuffed animal.  When they get to their rooms, after admission, they get to choose the color of the LED light that lines their windows. Anyone driving by the hospital at night is treated to an ever-changing color pattern, specifically designed for them by the children receiving treatment at Golisano, with in-room LED lighting controlled by the children.

Golisano is more than a place where children get treated. It’s a place where children can feel empowered – where they get to choose. Before surgery, children can choose between four Power Wheel cars as their mode of transportation into the operating room. These cars are more than a novelty – they help ease young patients’ anxieties during separation from their parents.

On top of that, patients get to choose the style and color of their surgical cap. This is the product of a 22-year strong initiative called “Sew Angelic™” created by the caregivers at The Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida (now Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida) more than 20 years ago. Through these keepsake caps, perioperative nurses can connect with young patients and help ease their fears. The hats made by Sew Angelic™ have made an incredibly positive impact on patients’ surgical experience to the point that children start looking for their caps upon admission.

From the creators of Sew Angelic™:

“The universally recognized symbol of a nurse is a cap, yet most nurses shed their caps long ago. Perioperative nurses, however, have retained a cap of sorts; our distinctive surgical caps. Through the Sew Angelic™ program, we share the surgical caps that symbolize our continued dedication to compassionate nursing care.”

“The children don’t choose to get sick or to come to the hospital. They do get to choose their surgical cap, the color of the bandage around their IVs, and how they enter the operating room, whether through a wagon or a racecar,” said Sandi Falk, BSN, RN, CNOR, co-creator of the Sew Angelic™ program.

In the most difficult of situations, Golisano has made every effort to allow kids to be kids, to help them cope, and to put their parents at ease. We couldn’t be more excited to name Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida as Soliant’s 2018 Most Beautiful Hospital in the U.S.

Take a virtual tour of Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida here.

Click here to learn more about Soliant’s Most Beautiful Hospitals in the U.S.

Already have a 2019 Most Beautiful Hospital in the U.S. nomination in mind? Click here to submit yours today.

The 20 Most Beautiful Hospitals in the U.S. (2017) are…

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After thousands and thousands of votes, the results are in for Soliant Health’s 9th annual list of the 20 Most Beautiful Hospitals in America. Continue reading “The 20 Most Beautiful Hospitals in the U.S. (2017) are…”