Friday, November 19, 2010

Tenth Anniversary

MGHfC celebrates 10 years of transforming pediatric health care

CELEBRATING 10 YEARS: MGHfC staff from left, Beth E. Charland, PNP, Wendy Jennings, RN, holding a card during one of the party's activities, and "Pedi the Bear"

On Nov. 11, the MGH celebrated the 10th anniversary of MassGeneral Hospital for Children (MGHfC) with a birthday party at the Yawkey Center for Outpatient Care. The event also celebrated 100 years of comprehensive pediatric services and 50 years of pediatric surgery at the MGH.

Attendees at the event included Peter L. Slavin, MD, MGH president; Ronald E. Kleinman, MD, MGHfC physician-in-chief; Joseph P. Vacanti, MD, MGHfC surgeon-in-chief; Sandy Dodge, MGHfC executive director; Debra N. Burke, RN, MSN, MBA, MGHfC associate chief nurse; and many MGHfC caregivers and employees.

As guests sampled cupcakes, candy, ice cream and other treats, Slavin spoke of the remarkable record of accomplishments and wonderful care provided by MGHfC. "This hospital has a great record of providing terrific care to the kids of this region,"
he said. "I know that firsthand because both of my children have been cared for by MassGeneral Hospital for Children, and we are very fortunate to have such a talented group of physicians, nurses, other caregivers and administrative staff."

In his remarks, Kleinman described the rapid growth and expansion of the pediatric program at the MGH since it took on the designation MGHfC. "If you go upstairs to the entrance of Ellison 17 and 18, you know that those are pediatric units, something very different than 20 years ago," he said. "If you walk with the residents on their morning rounds, you see that they incorporate parents into their rounds, and you know that family-centered care has become a focal point over the past ten years. It has been dramatically successful from everybody's perspective."

Serving more than 170,000 children every year, MGHfC includes approximately 50 medical specialties and 15 surgical services. Its many clinical, research and advocacy achievements over the past decade include defining the term "third-hand smoke" through a study led by MGHfC physician Jonathan Winickoff, MD, MPH, which examined adult attitudes about the health risks of third-hand smoke to children, and establishing the Lurie Family Autism Center, a world-class center dedicated to comprehensive clinical care for autistic individuals from early childhood to adulthood.

The program ended with Burke sharing some touching notes of thanks from grateful patients and Vacanti speaking about the future of MGHfC. Urging guests to take lessons from the MGH's upcoming bicentennial in 2011, Vacanti said, "I know that we'll be around 200 years from now even though it is impossible to predict how we will get there. I can tell you that today we are very well positioned to participate and lead in the transformation of health care in this country. Like the quote 'the best way to predict the future is to invent it,' all of us at MGHfC have the opportunity to not only participate but help create, and invent, the future of the care of children."

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