Men in high-vis waistcoats and protective helmets, massive excavating machines and tall yellow cranes are beavering away on the construction site in the western part of Rigshospitalet. They are building Rigshospitalet's new hospital for children, teenagers, expecting mothers and their families. The building has so far had the working name ‘BørneRiget’.
Now it is to be officially named, and it will be a royal name. On the occasion of Her Royal Highness Crown Mary’s 50th birthday, on 5 February BørneRiget will be officially renamed: 'Mary Elizabeth’s Hospital - Rigshospitalet for Children, Teens and Expecting Families’, after the Crown Princess, and later this year the Crown Princess will lay the ground-stone for the hospital at an official ceremony.
Video greeting from HRH The Crown Princess Mary on the occasion of the naming of Mary Elizabeth's Hospital.
“It’s immensely difficult when your child is ill. Especially if the child is so ill that he or she has to go to hospital. When a child is ill, everyday life and a feeling of security are more important than ever. In four years, Rigshospitalet's new hospital for children, teenagers and expecting mothers and their families will open, and the hospital will go new ways to create space for the needs and lives of patients and their families. It will be a place where they can feel safe and at home. I’m deeply moved and very proud that the hospital will bear my name,” said the Crown Princess about the naming.
To treat patients from throughout the Danish Realm
‘Mary Elizabeth’s Hospital - Rigshospitalet for Children, Teens and Expecting Families’ will be a highly specialised hospital for children, teenagers, expecting mothers and their families from all of Denmark. It will take new approaches to create space to meet the needs of people and their families, at which specialists cooperate across competences, where they come to patient rather than the opposite, and in which play is an integral part of the children's treatment.
“Cooperation is a fundamental value at Mary Elizabeth’s Hospital, and many patients will come from far away - some even from Greenland and the Faeroe Islands. Many will have a rare or serious disease. Dedicated staff from across professional competences, across sectors and across the whole of Denmark will make sure that families have the best treatment, regardless of where they live. When the corona situation allows during the spring of 2022, I look forward to laying the ground-stone of the hospital. And I look forward to following the project and to seeing and following developments in treatments for children, teenagers and pregnant women long after the hospital has opened,” said the Crown Princess.
Commitment to the well-being of children and teenagers
Lars Gaardhøj, Chairman of the Regional Council in the Capital Region of Denmark (Social Democrats), is pleased that the new hospital now has an official name. He is particularly pleased that the new hospital will be named after Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Mary, who is well-known for her strong commitment to children and youth:
"It's a great pleasure and honour for me and for everyone at the Capital Region of Denmark that the Crown Princess has agreed to give her name to the new hospital for children, teenagers, expecting mothers and their families. The Crown Princess already has a strong affiliation with Rigshospitalet, where she gave birth to her children, and where she is deeply committed to visiting the hospital's network for children with cancer,” said Lars Gaardhøj.
Official name embraces all patient groups
The project director for ‘Mary Elizabeth’s Hospital - Rigshospitalet for Children, Teens and Expecting Families’, Merete Lang, is also delighted with the new name.
“BørneRiget has been a good working title while the project was on the drawing board. However, after the first turf has been cut and as the building grows from its foundations, it’s crucial that all groups of patients can identify with the hospital. Teens and expecting mothers in particular have found it hard to associate with the old name, which means ‘Rigshospitalet for children’ in Danish. We are also signalling to both patients and staff that the new hospital is still an integral part of Rigshospitalet and therefore has the highest quality professional competences and treatment,” said Merete Lange.
Project director Merete Lange.
More than a building
‘Mary Elizabeth’s Hospital - Rigshospitalet for Children, Teens and Expecting Families’ will be more than just a building. It is an entirely new approach to designing a hospital. Before and during construction, patients, relatives and staff have been and will be regularly consulted on the design of the building, testing patient pathways, the layout and everyday situations at the hospital to make for the best possible user experience.
The new hospital building is a partnership between the Capital Region of Denmark, Rigshospitalet and Ole Kirk's Fond, with a total budget of DKK 2.4 bn., of which Ole Kirk's Fond is donating DKK 0.7 bn. DKK 85 mill. of the donation from Ole Kirk’s Fond has been earmarked to enhance the user experience at the new hospital.