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2011 Press Releases
Morton Plant Hospital's Axelrod Pavilion Opens as a Center for Diagnosis and Healing

 Outpatient facility uses design elements to create a supportive and tranquil environment

Clearwater, Fla., (June 27, 2011)-- On entering the two-story atrium of Morton Plant Hospital's new Axelrod Pavilion, it is easy to see how the use of  such design elements as natural light, warm wood tones, rock walls and bamboo is intended to create a center of healing and comfort. Home to imaging services, diagnostic services, comprehensive breast cancer services, cancer treatment, patient and family support services and physician offices, Morton Plant's newest outpatient facility is a four-story, 103,500-sq.-ft. building located on the hospital's campus.

"Our goal of the Axelrod Pavilion is to raise the bar by creating a center that offers leading edge medical diagnostics and services in an environment that promotes healing and comfort," said Kris Hoce, administrator, Morton Plant Hospital. "In addition to coordinating imaging and diagnostic procedures and our breast health services into an easily accessible location, we have worked to evoke a sense of tranquility and peace through the design elements." 

Services and programs located in the new Axelrod Pavilion include:

  • Carlisle Imaging Center (full range of imaging exams)
  • Susan Cheek Needler Breast Center (diagnostic breast imaging)
  • Comprehensive Breast Care Center of Tampa Bay (breast surgical oncologists Dr. Peter Blumencranz and Dr. Kathleen Allen)
  • CaPSS (Cancer Patient Support Services)
  • Evelyn Simmers Oncology Resource Library

The Axelrod Pavilion is named for Shirley and Harvey Axelrod in recognition of Mrs. Axelrod's generous support of the Morton Plant Mease Foundation. "We deeply appreciate Mrs. Axelrod for her vision and commitment in helping us create a medical space that balances advanced medical technology in a setting designed to promote comfort and healing for our patients," said Hoce.  

"A number of clinical services are located in the Axelrod Pavilion, but an initial hallmark of the center is our approach to the diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer," noted Hoce. On the diagnosis side, the Susan Cheek Needler Breast Center provides patient-focused, expedited diagnostic breast imaging and intervention services while focusing on each woman's physical and emotional needs. 

A main part of the treatment aspect is the Comprehensive Breast Care Center of Tampa Bay, featuring surgical oncologists Peter Blumencranz, MD, and Kathleen Allen, MD, who are fellowship-trained breast disease specialists. Dr. Blumencranz and Dr. Allen work in conjunction with board-certified radiologists, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists, plastic surgeons and patients' primary care physicians and gynecologists.  

"We are so excited to have our approach to breast cancer care showcased in the new Axelrod Pavilion," said Dr. Blumencranz, who is also medical director of the Morton Plant Hospital's comprehensive breast program. "From screening mammograms to diagnostic tests to treatment and free support services, we believe we have created a complete network of care that offers patients a significant advantage in the battle against breast disease. Morton Plant Hospital has also been nationally recognized for its complete approach to breast health and was the first hospital in Tampa Bay to receive accreditation of its comprehensive breast program from the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers (NAPBC). 

"As a physician, I have seen how important it is to provide support and comfort to patients. Through its design, the Axelrod Pavilion helps us to create an atmosphere of tranquility and peace for our patients and their families. This can be so important in helping patients heal, regardless of what stage they are in their life," said Dr. Blumencranz.

The Carlisle Imaging Center will relocate into the Axelrod Pavilion and continue to provide a full range of imaging exams including diagnostic x-rays, MRI, PET/CT, ultrasound, DEXA (bone scans) and screening mammography. An oncology resource library will be included in the Axelrod Pavilion as well as support by the Cancer Patient Support Services (CaPSS) at Morton Plant Hospital. CaPSS provides cancer patients and their families access to counselors, support groups and education in effective coping skills. A nurse navigator will also be located in the building to help guide patients and their families through the cancer treatment process. 

The architect for the project is HKS Architects Inc. of Orlando, FL. The contractor is Creative Contractors Inc. of Clearwater, FL.

The address for the Axelrod Pavilion is 400 Pinellas St., Clearwater. For more information, please call (727) 940-2898.

About Morton Plant Hospital

Established in 1916, Morton Plant Hospital is a 687-bed facility. Our commitment to improving the health of everyone we serve is reflected in our community partnerships and many honors. Morton Plant Hospital is the first hospital in Tampa Bay to have received accreditation of its comprehensive breast program from the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers (NAPBC). 

Morton Plant is the only hospital in the United States to have been awarded Top 100 Hospital designations by the Thomson Reuters 100 Top Hospitals: National Benchmarks for Success for all 10 years. Morton Plant also has partnered with H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute at the University of South Florida, Tampa to provide research and services for cancer patients. In 2008, the hospital was awarded Magnet Designation for the second time by the American Nurses Credentialing Center, the most prestigious national recognition of excellence in nursing care. Morton Plant Hospital is located at 300 Pinellas Street, Clearwater, Fla.

About BayCare Health System

BayCare Health System is a leading community-based health system in the Tampa Bay area. Composed of a network of 10 not-for-profit hospitals, outpatient facilities and services such as imaging, lab, behavioral health and home health care, BayCare provides expert medical care throughout a patient's lifetime. With more than 200 access points conveniently located throughout Tampa Bay, BayCare connects patients to a complete range of preventive, diagnostic and treatment services for any health care need. 

BayCare's family of hospitals are: Mease Countryside, Mease Dunedin, Morton Plant, Morton Plant North Bay, St. Anthony's, St. Joseph's, St. Joseph's Children's, St. Joseph's Hospital-North, St. Joseph's Women's, and South Florida Baptist. For more information, visit BayCare on the Web at


Media Contacts:

Beth Hardy, (727) 298-6199 Phone, (727) 402-8113 Pager

Denise Moore, (727) 461-8538 Phone, (727) 402-5975 Pager