Leaving the crowded Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) on the fourth floor, the first young patients, on beds and in incubators, were moved into the new spacious PICU three floors above in the Hadassah University Medical Center Charlotte R. Bloomberg Mother and Child Center.
Among the first patients were a 5-year-old girl from an Orthodox Jewish settlement near Jerusalem, who underwent complicated surgery to remove a massive sarcoma tumor from her cheek, and a 15-year-old boy from East Jerusalem who required a complex cardiac operation to rectify a long-term congenital heart defect. Shortly afterward, a 9-day-old baby, born with a complex cardiac anomaly, was transferred directly from the operating theater to the new PICU.
Hadassah's PICU is the principal facility for critically ill newborns through adolescents age 16, from the entire Jerusalem area (population of over one million), who have suffered multiple traumas, neurotrauma, or undergone complicated surgical procedures. Hadassah is a leader in pediatric cardiology and cardiac surgery, neurosurgery, and hemato-oncology. During 2011, 475 patients were hospitalized in Hadassah's PICU--a significant increase from 371 patients in 2010. The average stay was 5.5 days, ranging from 1 day to 3 weeks.
The new eight-bed PICU includes fully separated patient bays with electronically activated transparent glass doors, which control infection and avoid the spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Sophisticated electronic systems enable Hadassah's professional staff to monitor young patients from every location in the PICU—whether near the patient's bedside, at the nursing stations or in staff offices.