WALNUT CREEK, Calif. — John Muir Health recently announced it will open a new pediatric intensive care unit in its Walnut Creek, California medical center through a partnership with Stanford Children’s Health in January 2015. The inpatient hospital unit will be the first of its kind to serve Contra Costa County, offering critical care for children in local and surrounding communities.
“A child’s illness can be an overwhelming experience for families, especially when they have to travel far distances to receive the care they need. This new pediatric unit staffed by top specialists passionate about their patients offers a healing environment that allows patients and families to remain close to home,” said Beth Lannon, EdD, executive director of Children’s Specialty Services at John Muir Health.
The PICU is designed to allow healthcare providers to care for sick and injured children ages 0 to 18. These experts will be able to treat a wide range of conditions, such as congenital heart and neurological disorders, scoliosis, diabetes and respiratory problems.
In addition to critical care specialists from Stanford Children’s Health, the PICU will be staffed by a child life specialist who will work closely with patients and families as well as doctors, nurses, social workers and others to address the emotional, developmental and cultural needs of each child and family.
The structure of the new inpatient unit includes eight private rooms adjacent to the neonatal intensive care unit and pediatric units. Each room is structured to accommodate parents and family staying overnight. With funding from the John Muir Health Foundation, the new PICU rooms will be outfitted with equipment and furniture appropriately sized for younger patients, as well as adult-sized amenities for parents and families such as sleep chairs, a family lounge and kitchen.
John Muir Health and Stanford Children’s Health began their partnership in 2012 to provide access to comprehensive children’s specialty services for families in Contra Costa County and surrounding communities. The collaboration includes a growing number of surgical and medical services, as well as outpatient, inpatient, neonatal and emergency care, which enables children with conditions ranging from allergies or bedwetting to more complex illnesses to see Stanford Children’s Health specialists locally through John Muir Health.