Step inside Children's Hospital and you'll enter a unique world: one where skilled physicians and staff work with patients and families to bring miracles to life.

Amid the child-friendly, life-size giraffes and elephants that adorn our corridors you'll feel the buzz of energy and purpose that define our community.

We are united by a compelling mission: to prevent, treat and eliminate pediatric disease.

Children's was created nearly 100 years ago in response to a need. After losing her young son to inflammatory rheumatism, Anna Clise galvanized 23 female friends and, in 1907, established the first facility west of the Mississippi to specialize in treating children.

Led by Dr. Gordon Cohen, Children's was the first western US hospital to perform ABO-mismatched heart transplants.

Led by Dr. Gordon Cohen, Children's was the first western US hospital to perform ABO-mismatched heart transplants.

Her foundational belief — that children deserve medical care that addresses their unique needs — inspires us still.

During the last century, Children's has grown into the premier pediatric referral center for Washington, Alaska, Montana and Idaho.

Through the work of caregivers in nearly 60 pediatric subspecialties, we provide inpatient, outpatient, diagnostic, emergency, outreach and telemedicine services that meet the needs of children in our region and beyond.

Change and focus were the hallmarks of the past year. We said goodbye to longtime president and CEO, Treuman Katz, whose leadership enabled us to blossom from a well-respected community hospital to one of the best academic pediatric medical centers in the United States.

Dr. Thomas Hansen assumed the helm as president and CEO on October 1, 2005, enthusiastic about the opportunity to lead Children's in becoming the nation's best children's hospital and one of the top pediatric medical research institutions.

Our flourishing research program is the engine that drives our success. It spurs the discoveries that transform the way medicine is practiced. It attracts the best doctors, nurses, scientists and staff.

It brings new hope to children and families battling life-threatening illnesses and chronic conditions. Our physician-scientists publish findings of national significance on a wide range of topics.

In late 2005, Children's announced its intention to acquire or build up to one million square feet of additional research space outside our Seattle campus during the next 10 to 20 years.

We take pride in our role as the region's primary pediatric teaching resource, training pediatric specialists, family practitioners, nurses, technicians, dentists and post-doctoral researchers.

Our residency program, in partnership with the University of Washington School of Medicine, offers more than 50 fellowships each year and is consistently ranked among the best in the nation.

Through our advocacy and public awareness programs, we work to prevent disease and injury before they occur. Our drowning prevention, fire safety, and car and booster seat campaigns have become national models.

We continue our work with the Washington State Legislature and the U.S. Congress to preserve Medicaid benefits for thousands of children who would otherwise be without coverage.