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UCI Health — Irvine opens its doors

April 19, 2024 | UCI Health
Exterior rendering of the Joe C. Wen & Family Center for Advanced Care at the UCI Health — Irvine medical comoplex.

The Joe C. Wen & Family Center for Advanced Care offers convenient access to state-of-the-art primary and specialty care for children and adults, all under one roof in Irvine. Architectural rendering for UCI Health

With the opening of the Joe C. Wen & Family Center for Advanced Care in Irvine, UCI Health is bringing the power of academic medicine to of coastal and south Orange County, fundamentally changing the region's healthcare landscape.

The Wen center for Advanced Care, the first of three state-of-the-art buildings to open at the new UCI Health — Irvine campus, offers primary and specialty outpatient care for adults and children, all conveniently located under one roof on Jamboree Road and Birch Street.

A key mission of the Wen center, which opened its doors to patients on April 30, is to deliver the finest multidisciplinary care in a setting that emphasizes convenience and comfort. Many patient needs can be met at the center during a single trip, including physician visits, laboratory tests and imaging.

“The Joe C. Wen & Family Center for Advanced Care will provide access to comprehensive outpatient care in critical clinical specialties that are only available from an academic health system,” says Chad T. Lefteris, president and chief executive officer of UCI Health.

Construction of the $221 million, 168,000-square-foot facility was approved by the University of California Board of Regents in August 2020 and was augmented by a $20 million gift from Joe C. Wen and his family. Wen is the founder and chief executive of Sakura Paper Inc., a division of Formosa Ltd. The gift is one of the largest ever to the University of California, Irvine.

A nexus of leading-edge care

The five-story Wen center is divided into spaces devoted to pediatric primary and specialty care, adult primary care and a broad range of adult specialty care. They include digestive health specialties, cardiovascular care, endocrinology, gynecology, neurology, neurosurgery, orthopaedics, pain, spine, sports medicine as well as ear, nose and throat services.

Comprehensive lab and imaging services are located on the first floor, as is the new home of the UCI Health Center for Autism & Neurodevelopmental Disorders.

An urgent care center staffed seven days a week by emergency medicine physicians occupies a wing of the ground floor with its own entrance. Patients and visitors can also relax in an airy cafe or outdoor garden area. In addition, an adjacent 800-space parking structure allows quick access to Wen center services.

Advanced pediatric care

The Center for Children’s Health occupies the entire second floor of the Wen center.

Through the long-standing UCI Health affiliation with Children’s Hospital of Orange County (CHOC), the pediatric center provides leading-edge care for children from birth through early adulthood. It also includes fetal medicine and primary and specialty care for kids with chronic conditions.

Staffed by board-certified pediatricians, the Center for Children’s Health is designed to foster one-stop, outpatient healthcare.

Digestive disease specialties

The Wen center’s third floor will be home to several signature services offered by the nationally renowned UCI Health Digestive Health Institute (DHI). They include subspecialty services focused on inflammatory bowel disease, weight control and metabolic conditions, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), as well as four interventional gastrointestinal procedure rooms.

UCI Health digestive disease specialists have pioneered numerous advances in gastrointestinal (GI) healthcare, including endoscopic procedures, organ-sparing surgical techniques and the use of artificial intelligence in colorectal cancer screening. Patients also have access to groundbreaking therapies unavailable elsewhere.

Cardiology, ear, nose and throat, endocrinology, gastroenterology, gynecology, hepatology, primary care, sports medicine, urology and vascular surgery services are also offered there.

Elsewhere on the third floor are adult primary and specialty care services, including gynecology and women's health, vascular surgery, endocrinology and ear, nose and throat teams.

Comprehensive neuromuscular center

On the Wen center’s fourth floor, UCI Health is establishing its first comprehensive musculoskeletal service, blending specialty care for orthopaedics, spine, pain management and neurology in one location to foster collaborative, multidisciplinary care.

Also on the fourth level are cardiology services, including six exam rooms and two diagnostic testing areas.

Coming soon

The second phase of the $1.3 billion Irvine medical complex, the Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center and Ambulatory Care building, will open to patients in July.

Together, the Wen and cancer centers will foster research efforts — the foundation of an academic health system — giving patients access to the latest, most promising new therapies unavailable elsewhere.

The final phase of the Irvine medical complex will be a 144-bed acute care hospital complete with a 24-hour emergency department, which are scheduled to open in 2025.

“This medical center will have a such positive impact on so many lives,” says Donna Hurt, director of ambulatory care administration, who has helped oversee staffing and service operations for the Wen center. "I'm honored to be a part of such great work."

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