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Hospital for Special Care Breaks New Ground in Autism Care with $13 million Inpatient/Partial Hospital Facility

October 29, 2019

New Britain Mayor Erin Stewart and State Representative Robert Sanchez joined 100 public officials, donors, patients, volunteers and employees on October 29th to celebrate the Hospital for Special Care’s progress in  breaking new ground in autism care. Hospital for Special Care (HFSC) will expand access to the only autism inpatient unit in Connecticut and build a first-of-its- kind partial hospital program for children and youth impacted by Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) at the hospital’s New Britain campus.  Guests gathered to celebrate the start of the $13 million, 12-month construction project and receive an update on progress toward the capital campaign goal.

“We’re breaking ground today on a 12 bed inpatient unit – designed specifically for the children and families we serve – and a first-of-its-kind Partial Hospital Program,” said Lynn Ricci, FACHE, President and CEO, HFSC. “Our new inpatient unit will provide single-patient rooms, in a care environment designed by our clinical staff to meet children’s needs, and maximize opportunities for parent education and training – a key component to success in the community. Our new Partial Hospital Program will provide the first step-up and step-down level of care – an entirely new option in care to help bridge difficult transitions, divert inpatient stays and maximize continuity in care.”

At the start of February, construction is well underway, with a planned completion at the end of 2020. Donors are invited to a celebration February 20th and will get a first look of the steel foundation and beginnings of the roof.

Recognized as a regional and national leader in autism care, HFSC’s inpatient unit is one of only 11 in the country.  The hospital’s outpatient center is the only program of its type to achieve designation by the national Committee for Quality Assurance as a Patient Centered Specialty Practice. The expanded program capacity will allow HFSC to address critical gaps in services in Connecticut that often leave children waiting in emergency departments.  The expanded programs, slated to open in Fall of 2020 will serve up to 130 additional children and adolescents severely impacted by ASD each year.

The project, designed by KaestleBoos Associates, and managed by Downes Construction, is funded in part by a $10 million bond award from the State of Connecticut and the hospital’s ongoing Superheroes for Autism $3 million capital campaign.  Ricci announced October 29th that the hospital has raised approximately $2.4 million to date in the community in addition to the state funds.  The Community Foundation of Greater New Britain, Downes Construction, Dr. Marie Gustin and the Thomaston Savings Bank Foundation were recognized for recent gifts to the campaign.

Ricci also recognized early investors in the campaign including:

  • The American Savings Foundation
  • The William and Ellen Macristy Foundation
  • The Petit Family Foundation
  • Stanley Black & Decker
  • The Connecticut Health and Educational Facilities Authority
  • The Benjamin A. Hawley New Britain Day Nursery Fund of the Community Foundation of Greater New Britain
  • The Richard P. Garmany Fund of the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving
  • The Aldo DeDominicis Foundation
  • The Farmington Bank Community Foundation
  • KaestleBoos Associates
  • The Greater Newington Charitable Society
  • The Children’s Charities Tennis Classic


This article was updated 1/31/2020


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  • Hollie Randall
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