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Florida Hospital for Children Partners with Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC to Develop Pediatric Liver Transplant Program in Florida

PrintIn order to make lifesaving liver transplants available throughout central and north Florida, Florida Hospital for Children is partnering with Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC to develop a comprehensive pediatric liver transplant program. This will be the first program of its kind in Orlando, the second in Florida, and is expected to start accepting patients in January.

Florida Hospital is one of the largest not-for-profit hospitals in the country. The organization’s range of nationally and internationally recognized services includes transplant, pediatrics, cardiology and advanced surgical programs. Florida Hospital for Children’s flagship hospital in Orlando is the heart of a children’s network that includes primary care pediatricians, specialty clinics, emergency departments and Kids Urgent Care.

“There is a critical need for children across our state to have access to a liver transplant program that is close to home,” said Regino Gonzalez-Peralta, MD, director of pediatric gastroenterology, hepatology and liver transplantation with Florida Hospital for Children. “This partnership brings the experience of one the nation’s best pediatric liver transplant programs to central Florida. The Florida Hospital and Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC’s partnership is not only a win for our patients, but all of Florida.”

The teams will work in partnership with Florida Hospital’s Transplant Institute, which offers kidney, liver, kidney/pancreas, lung and heart transplants.

“Florida Hospital has been committed to saving lives through our transplant programs for more than 40 years, and it is our goal to provide the same level of advanced and compassionate care to infants and children in our community in need of liver transplants,” said Thomas Chin, MD, director of the Florida Hospital Transplant Institute’s liver transplant program. “We are honored to partner with Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC and bring our world-class programs together.”

In order to offer these transplants to families in the Florida area, the hospital will work with the Hillman Center for Pediatric Transplantation at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, which has performed more than 1,800 pediatric liver transplants – more than any other center in the United States, according to the United Network for Organ Sharing, with patient survival rates consistently higher than national averages.

“We are grateful for this opportunity to now expand our services and expertise in pediatric liver transplantation to families in the Florida area,” said George V. Mazariegos, MD, chief of pediatric transplantation at Children’s. “Our extension of expertise will provide the best possible care and make transplant a life-saving treatment for local families and help them to achieve a better quality of life.”

In 1981, Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC opened the country’s first comprehensive pediatric transplant center under the guidance of transplant pioneer Thomas E. Starzl, MD, PhD. According to the 2017 data released by the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients, the pediatric liver transplant program at Children’s ranks number 1 out of 62 pediatric liver transplant centers in the United States for one-year overall patient and graft survival when comparing hazard ratio estimates. The program remains at the leading edge of expertise, innovation, and patient- and family centered care for transplant patients from all over the world.

Members of the transplant team from Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC will participate in the management of patients in Florida. Transplant surgeons, medical specialists and nurses from Florida and Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC will perform pediatric liver transplant surgeries together at Florida Hospital for Children.

The pediatric liver transplant partnership with Florida Hospital is the second program of its kind for Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC. In 2016, Children’s Hospital became the first and only pediatric liver transplant program to expand the geographic reach of its expertise through a partnership with the University of Virginia Children’s Hospital in Charlottesville. Today, Children’s pediatric liver transplant network extends from Pittsburgh to Virginia, and now Florida.

The Heart Institute at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC Announces Leadership Changes

Print Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC has announced new leadership appointments in its Heart Institute and Division of Pediatric Cardiology.

Jacqueline Kreutzer, MD, professor of pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, is now appointed as chief of the Division of Pediatric Cardiology.

An internationally recognized leader in interventional cardiology, Kreutzer currently is serving as director of the Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory at Children’s Hospital. She completed a pediatric cardiology fellowship and training in interventional cardiology at Boston Children’s Hospital and is board-certified in pediatric cardiology and adult congenital heart disease. Kreutzer joined Children’s Hospital in 2005.

Kreutzer has been a clinical champion for the Division of Pediatric Cardiology, distinguished in the field of interventional cardiology innovation, bringing new techniques to Children’s Hospital. She has served as the institutional investigator on numerous clinical trials for investigational devices and currently is the national principal investigator for the Melody transcatheter pulmonary valve post-approval study.

Kreutzer has authored more than 80 publications and serves as editor and reviewer for several journals, including the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. She has lectured extensively and served in numerous academic positions such as for the American Board of Pediatrics, American College of Cardiology, American Heart Association and the Society of Cardiac Angiography and Intervention.

Vivek Allada, MD, professor of pediatrics at the Pitt School of Medicine, has been appointed executive director of the Heart Institute at Children’s Hospital.

Allada completed his pediatric cardiology fellowship at the University of California, Los Angeles, specializing in non-invasive imaging. He has served as the clinical director of pediatric cardiology in the Department of Pediatrics since 2006 and as the interim division chief since 2012. He is recognized nationally, having co-chaired the Committee on Pediatric Echocardiography Laboratory for the American Society of Echocardiography. Allada has distinguished himself as a clinical leader with outstanding administrative talents while leading the Division of Pediatric Cardiology and the Heart Institute. Along with his new role overseeing the Heart Institute strategic plans, he will continue as clinical director for the Division of Pediatric Cardiology.

“Drs. Kreutzer and Allada have been instrumental in the development and success of the Division of Pediatric Cardiology and the Heart Institute,” said Terence Dermody, MD, chair of the Department of Pediatrics, Pitt School of Medicine, and physician-in-chief and scientific director at Children’s Hospital. “Under their leadership, many new clinical initiatives have been developed, resulting in the highest quality ratings and substantial growth for the overall cardiology program.”

In addition to Kreutzer and Allada, Children’s Heart Institute is co-directed by Victor Morell, MD, chief of the Division of Pediatric Cardiothoracic Surgery. Under Morell’s leadership, Children’s pediatric cardiovascular surgery program has outcomes that are among the highest in the nation. Children’s had one of the lowest overall four-year surgical mortality rates among all high-volume programs with a mortality rate under 2 percent and was awarded a 3-Star rating by the Society of Thoracic Surgeons (2012-2016), one of only eleven programs to receive this distinction. Nationally, the average mortality rate for all pediatric cardiovascular programs was 3.1 percent during the same reporting period.

To learn more about the Heart Institute, please visit www.chp.edu/heart.

Neuro-Oncology Researcher at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC Receives Grant from St. Baldrick’s Foundation

PrintGary Kohanbash, PhD, a neuro-oncology researcher at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, has been awarded a scholar grant of $298,000 from the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, a volunteer-driven charity dedicated to raising money for childhood cancer research.

These grants provide resources to institutions to conduct more research and enroll more children in ongoing clinical trials. Kohanbash and his team will look at improving immunotherapy for ependymomas, the third most common kind of brain tumor in children.

“As a scientist and a father, I am driven to help save kids from brain cancers, so I am very excited about the potential of immunotherapy. Unimaginable advances within the last 10 years are enabling us to create new, safer and more effective treatments,” said Kohanbash, who also is an assistant professor of neurological surgery at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. “With this funding from the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, I am hopeful that we can bridge the gap between lab research and clinical care for kids with ependymomas.”

Kohanbash’s team has identified three peptides that might activate immune cells to specifically fight one of the more lethal types of ependymoma. He will be testing these peptides in the lab and also is looking at how immunotherapy could help fight all six types of ependymoma that affect kids.

“We are thrilled Dr. Kohanbash is receiving this grant based on his experience and accomplishments in the field of brain tumor immunology and his ongoing work to translate findings from the lab into promising treatments for children with ependymomas,” said Ian Pollack, MD, chief, Pediatric Neurosurgery, Children’s Hospital.

The grant is supported by the St. Baldrick’s Henry Cermak Fund for Pediatric Cancer Research.

For more information, please visit www.chp.edu.

Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC Ranked Among Top Pediatric Hospitals in the United States

Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC has once again been recognized as one of the top pediatric hospitals in the country, earning a spot on this year’s U.S. News & World Report Honor Roll of America’s Best Children’s Hospitals.

It is the 8th consecutive year Children’s Hospital has appeared on the Best Children’s Hospitals list, which was released today.

“We are proud to be consistently recognized as one of the best children’s hospitals in the country,” said Christopher Gessner, president, Children’s Hospital. “It is rewarding for our physicians, nurses and support staff, who every day work together with skill and passion to provide the best care for children and adolescents with the most complex medical conditions.”

The Best Children’s Hospitals rankings highlight the top 50 US pediatric hospitals in each of 10 specialties: cancer; cardiology and heart surgery; diabetes and endocrinology; gastroenterology and GI surgery; neonatology; nephrology; neurology and neurosurgery; orthopedics; pulmonology; and urology.

Children’s is ranked 9th on the honor roll and is ranked in all 10 of the specialties.

The 2017-18 Best Children’s Hospitals rankings will be released online today and will be published in the “Best Hospitals 2018” guidebook, available in September.

The Best Children’s Hospitals rankings were introduced in 2007 to help families of children with rare or life-threatening illnesses find the best medical care available. The rankings open the door to an array of detailed information about each hospital’s performance.

The other hospitals named to the Honor Roll of Best Children’s Hospitals for 2017-18 are:

1. Boston Children’s Hospital
2. Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
3. Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center
4. Texas Children’s Hospital, Houston
5. John Hopkins Children’s Center, Baltimore
6. Children’s Hospital Los Angeles
7. Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago
7. Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Columbus, Ohio
9. Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC
10. Children’s National Medical Center, Washington D.C.

Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC Pulmonary Chief Elected Secretary-Treasurer of the American Thoracic Society

CELEDON_JUAN_MD_PDP_20131105_CSThe American Thoracic Society (ATS) has elected Juan C. Celedón, MD, DrPH, chief, Division of Pulmonary Medicine, Allergy and Immunology at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, as its Secretary–Treasurer for the 2017–18 term.
Dr. Celedón will then assume the role of ATS President for the 2020 21 term and notably will be the first ATS president from the University of Pittsburgh, as well as the first Latino American to serve as ATS president, in the 115-year history of the society.

“I am deeply humbled and honored to have been elected as the Secretary-Treasurer of the American Thoracic Society, arguably the leading professional society in academic pulmonary, critical care and sleep medicine worldwide,” said Dr. Celedón, Niels K. Jerne Professor of Pediatrics, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. “I hope to further the mission of the ATS in achieving respiratory health equality and workforce diversity, while continuing to pursue excellence in research, education and training, as well as clinical care of patients with pulmonary diseases, critical illnesses and sleep disorders.”

“On behalf of the ATS community, we wholeheartedly welcome Dr. Celedón to the elected leadership of the Society,” said David Gozal, MD, MBA, president of the ATS. “His previous achievements and recognition have clearly earned him this honor. We look forward to his future contributions to the ATS and to the field of pulmonary, critical care and sleep medicine both nationally and around the world.”

Dr. Celedón has been a member of the ATS since 1993. He received from the ATS the “Recognition Award for Scientific Accomplishments” in 2014, and was the first-ever recipient of the “Lifetime Award for Innovations in Health Equality” in 2015.

His research has focused on asthma and COPD, and on health disparities in airway diseases. His research, which has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, has been recognized with his election to the American Society for Clinical Investigation and the Association of American Physicians.

Dr. Celedón, who also serves as professor of Medicine, Epidemiology and Human Genetics at the University of Pittsburgh, will be installed as Secretary–Treasurer in May at the ATS 2017 International Conference in Washington, DC.

Founded in 1905, the American Thoracic Society is the world’s leading medical association dedicated to advancing pulmonary, critical care and sleep medicine. The Society’s 15,000 members prevent and fight respiratory disease around the globe through research, education, patient care and advocacy. The ATS publishes three journals, the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, the American Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology and the Annals of the American Thoracic Society.

For more information on Dr. Celedón, visit www.chp.edu.

Announcing Our New Co-Director of the Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) Center — Sandra Kim, MD, Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC

PrintSandra Kim, MD, a nationally recognized expert in pediatric and adolescent inflammatory bowel disease, is the co-director of the Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) Center, a part of the Division of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC. Dr. Kim is also Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. Prior to joining Children’s Hospital, Dr. Kim was co-director of the Center for Pediatric and Adolescent Inflammatory Bowel Disease at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio.

In Pittsburgh, Dr. Kim, along with Sapana Shah, MD, will establish the hospital’s participation in Improved Care Now, a national consortium to improve the care of children with IBD. Dr. Kim’s clinical and research interests focus on pediatric inflammatory bowel diseases, including adolescent transitioning and quality improvement in pediatric IBD and the impact of the gastrointestinal microbiota in IBD. Her research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health and the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA). She has authored numerous studies on pediatric and adolescent inflammatory bowel diseases. Dr. Kim currently serves as past chair of Pediatric Affairs and current co – chair of Government Affairs/Advocacy for the CCFA nationally. In addition, she chairs the Clinical Practice and Adolescent Transitioning committees and serves on the Physician Leadership committee and Strategy Council for Improve Care Now. Dr. Kim also is involved as a member of the Medical Advisory Board for Flying Horse Farms and on the board of Directors for the Central Ohio CCFA chapter. As a reflection of her dedication to her profession, Dr. Kim was awarded the 2011 Rosenthal Award for her leadership in patient education and advocacy by the CCFA. She also was the 2015 faculty inductee at the Ohio State University College of Medicine chapters of Gold Humanism Honor Society and Alpha Omega Alpha.

Dr. Kim is a graduate of the University of Michigan’s Inteflex (Integrated Pre-medical/Medical) Program, earning bachelors’ degrees in Biomedical Sciences and Psychology as well as her medical degree. She completed clinical training in General Pediatrics and Pediatric Gastroenterology at Texas Children’s Hospital and the Baylor College of Medicine. She was a recipient of the Outstanding Clinical Fellow Award during her GI fellowship and was on the NIH/NIDDK-funded T32 grant for her research project investigating zinc metabolism in children with IBD. After her clinical training, she pursued additional training as a post-doctoral fellow at the NIH-funded Center for GI Biology and Disease at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

American Academy of Pediatrics Webinar Series on Zika Virus featuring Amy Houtrow, MD, PhD — Jan. 10, 2017

Recognizing Microcephaly and Other Presentations of Zika Virus Syndrome
Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2 p.m. ET
Registration is required.

Dial-In Information
Phone: 844-216-1726
Conference ID: 18985179
Registration Link: https://cc.readytalk.com/r/viw68r9pls12&eom

Description
Over the past year, congenital Zika virus syndrome has captured the attention of the world because of the devastating effects it can have on infants’ development. In recognition that pediatricians (primary care providers, clinicians, and subspecialists) will require support and guidance, the American Academy of Pediatrics Webinar Series on Zika Virus Syndrome was created. During the first webinar in this series, expert speakers will provide an overview of the neurodevelopmental manifestations of congenital Zika virus syndrome. Experts will also describe how to monitor symptomatic and asymptomatic infants, including how to collaborate with specialists to ensure a continuum of care.

Speakers
Amy Houtrow, MD, PhD, MPH, FAAP
Dr Houtrow is pediatric rehabilitation medicine physician and health services researcher.  She is an Associate Professor and Vice Chair in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation for Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. She directs the Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine Fellowship and is the Chief of Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine Services and the Medical Director of the Rehabilitation Institute at the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. Dr Houtrow’s main clinical focus is caring for children with disabling conditions to help to improve functioning and quality of life to the greatest degree possible. Her research focuses on improving how children with disabilities and their families access health care to optimize health care delivery.

Edwin Trevathan, MD, MPH, FAAP
Dr. Trevathan is a child neurologist, an epidemiologist, and a public health leader, who is internationally known for his expertise in childhood epilepsy, disorders of the developing brain, developmental disabilities, and birth defects. Trevathan is a Professor of Pediatrics and Neurology at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, and a pediatric neurologist at the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. Dr Trevathan has held a number of senior leadership positions in academia and in government. He has served as Executive Vice President and Provost at Baylor University; Dean of the College for Public Health and Social Justice at Saint Louis University; Director of the Division of Pediatric and Developmental Neurology at Washington University in St. Louis, MO; and Director of the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Additional Information
Please email DisasterReady@aap.org with any questions prior to the webinar.

 

 

Grant Awarded for National Biorepository for GUDMAP Biobank

Sunder Sims-Lucas, PhD, and Jacqueline Ho, MD, are co-investigators on a $600,000 per year grant for 5 years from the National Institutes of Health to be the national biorepository for the GenitoUrinary Development Molecular Anatomy Project (GUDMAP).

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GUDMAP is an international consortium working to generate gene expression data and transgenic mice as tools to study genitourinary development. This curated, high-resolution dataset serves as a powerful resource for biologists, clinicians and bioinformaticians interested in the developing urogenital system.

GUDMAP data is accessible at www.gudmap.org.

Hospitalized Patients at Risk if Sodium Levels are Low

Michael Moritz, MD, explains how hospitalized patients could be at risk of weak bones, and increased infections if physicians ignore low-sodium in the body, known as hyponatremia.

Dr. Moritz is clinical director, Division of Pediatric Nephrology at Children’s Hospital of UPMC and as Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. Dr. Moritz is an authority on sodium and water metabolism in children.

Hospitalized patients at risk if sodium levels are low – Frontiers Science Hero from Frontiers on Vimeo.

Growing Kidneys in Lymph Nodes

Carl Bates, MD, and Sunder Sims-Lucas, PhD, of the Division of Pediatric Nephrology at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, in collaboration with Eric Lagasse, PhD, of the University of Pittsburgh McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine, are developing a novel approach to regenerate kidney tissues.

The group has discovered that embryonic kidney fragments and isolated nephron progenitors have the potential to form perfused kidney structures when injected into mouse lymph nodes. The Bates, Sims-Lucas, and Lagasse laboratories have received a Pediatric Device Initiative Award sponsored by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in support of their work.

 

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