A great children’s hospital must be two things.
To rise to a level of national reputation and recognition, it must have a full cadre of medical experts in the vast array of illnesses and diseases that can affect children—subspecialists with years of training who bring immense knowledge and extensive experience to those complex illnesses and diseases.
In addition to unexcelled expertise, a great children’s hospital must meet another requirement. It must have a heart. A heart big enough and open enough to remember that children live in their own world of fantasy and fear, outsized compared to our own, and that their parents treasure them in ways that cannot be expressed and worry over them more than they do about themselves.
By both of these measures, The Children’s Hospital at Sinai has earned its reputation as one of the leading community pediatric hospitals in the United States.
With many qualities usually found in large university-based hospitals, The Children’s Hospital at Sinai is an academic institution, the third largest teaching hospital in Maryland, with one of the strongest pediatric residency programs in the country, 36 full-time faculty and 16 subspecialties. This means that we are able to provide a much broader scope of services than can be found at a traditional community hospital.
The Children’s Hospital at Sinai is the only community hospital in Maryland with pediatric tertiary care. Treating over 2,500 inpatients and 30,000 outpatients each year, our pediatric subspecialties include cardiology, critical care medicine, the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, neonatology, Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, gastroenterology, endocrinology, orthopedics, neurology and infectious diseases. In addition, the Division of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology treats hundreds of children each year with pediatric cancers and blood disorders by providing outpatient and inpatient chemotherapy as well as ongoing treatment and follow-up. In acknowledgment of our expertise, area hospitals often send pediatric specialty cases to Sinai.
But our mission remains the same as a community hospital: to provide warm, human care for the people of our region.
The greatest testament to our quality, to how we do our work, comes from the children and their parents who come here often in the single most terrifying and threatening moment in their lives. They speak of physicians, outstanding in their field, who always provided not just treatment, but encouragement—experts with empathetic hearts. They talk about nurses and social workers who always had time to answer questions, or direct them to additional support services. They talk with deep gratitude about those times when they felt alone in a tight circle of fear and uncertainty—when all their dreams were in jeopardy—and they looked up to see that they were surrounded by people who had not just the skill to heal, but the patience to listen, the compassion to console.
The following stories are of children whose future was in question and of the expert physicians, nurses and staff who gave them back their dreams.
The Freedom to Aspire
Melissa Warzinsky endured years of serious illness and uncertainty. When she was a freshman at North Carroll High School, she began to lose her appetite and experience severe stomach pains. Months passed before she was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis. Learn More...
The Freedom to Achieve
5 times in six weeks, when she was just 14, Stephanie Hintenach almost bled to death.
Each time her family gathered at the hospital hoping, praying, while down a long corridor in another room physicians and nurses kept pulling their daughter back from the edge of death. In just one night she lost 33 units of blood.
Hear her story.....
The Freedom to Inspire
Jazmin’s life was placed in jeopardy when she was just 6 years old.
She was taken to Sinai Hospital ’s ER-7 with a temperature of 104, and was even more ill than her parents feared.
The Freedom to Excel
When Micah was 5 years old, all routine and normality in his life was shattered. Suffering from flu-like symptoms for several days, Micah suddenly experienced very shallow breathing and was rushed to Sinai Hospital's ER-7.
Find Our More
The Freedom to Wonder
At just 6 weeks old, William began experiencing seizure-like symptoms. For over a year neurological experts at two different hospitals told William’s parents that there was nothing seriously wrong with their son. But his parents, witnessing the episodes each night, could not believe them. And so they kept searching.
See what they found
The Freedom to Spread Joy
When 7-year-old Sammie Cohen comes to Sinai, everyone is delighted to see her. If you spent just two minutes with her, you would understand. She is a child with a serious illness; but her illness does not define her and it cannot subdue her effervescence.
Find Our More
The Freedom to Care
Laura Wagner, a pediatric nurse, with training in oncology, brings her medical knowledge and years of experience into each room. She also brings something else—something that changes everything. She brings the 10-year-old girl she once was—the one who was held in the grip and fear of leukemia. Find Our More
The Children’s Hospital at Sinai has risen to prominence on the strength of its medical staff and the quality of the care it is able to provide.
In recent years, the number of children we serve has grown dramatically. Just six years ago, The Children’s Hospital at Sinai had 1,700 admissions. We now serve over 2,500 children each year. Our daily census has increased from 11 children to 18.
This remarkable growth places extreme, unrelenting pressure on our current facilities, which were not designed to accommodate the number of patients we now serve. Inadequate space makes it more difficult for our staff to do their work. Additionally, our children and parents lack the amenities they deserve in a hospital of our quality.
We must expand. We must modernize. But we will not simply grow. We will create these new, necessary spaces around a powerful innovative medical concept: Family-Centered Care.
Family-Centered Care is based on the understanding that no child lives in isolation, and so no child can heal in isolation. It is built on a partnership between families and health care professionals.
Family-Centered Care acknowledges that parents are crucial elements of a child’s hospital experience—their presence is of inestimable importance to their child’s well-being; the medical information they obtain from health care professionals, both formally and informally, is essential to maintaining their child’s progress after discharge. This is particularly important in a time when the average length of stay has declined to 2.8 days. Children now face significant recovery time at home, and this requires the care of parents who have learned from close contact with the entire treatment team.
Involving parents more closely with their child’s treatment begins with a space for them to sleep in the child’s hospital room. It is for this reason that as we increase our number of beds from 22 to 30, each room will be a single with adjoining areas for parents to spend the night.
Additional plans include:
• A new entrance for The Children’s Hospital
• Expansion of remote anesthesia, which will allow children to be anesthetized in the company of their parents on the pediatric unit instead of in the small room in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit currently used for this purpose
• Relocation and expansion of the Hematology/Oncology unit and infusion area
to address the growth of the number of pediatric oncology cases
• Expanded playroom spaces to accommodate the increased number of patients
• An urgently needed waiting room for parents and relatives—currently there is no space set aside for this purpose
• A learning/resource room equipped with computers and wireless Internet access
These are a spectrum of the ambitious plans for the future of The Children’s Hospital at Sinai that are essential to respond to our remarkable growth and to changes in health care delivery. They will give our children and their families privacy, comfort and a bright cheerful environment that supports them during their hospital stay.
They will give our medical staff the spaces they need to do the work they must do: to help and to heal the children who come to us each day for care.
For more information, contact the Department of Development at 410-601-4438