June 26, 2019 | 75° F

RWJ Barnabas, Rutgers Health open surgical care practice for children

Photo by Jeffrey Gomez |

The Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School created the Surgical Care for Kids space through its Rutgers Health practice. A combination of experts and state-of-the-art resources will allow the practice to see and help more children. 

Located at 125 Paterson St. New Brunswick, NJ, the Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School Clinical Academic Building is now host to a new surgical care practice for children.

Surgical Care for Kids is run through Rutgers Health, which is an academic health care provider that offers accessible clinical care throughout the state, supported by the latest in medical research and education. 

Sherine Gabriel, dean of the Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, said the space will increase the number of children served as well as the type of service.

“As part of Rutgers Health, and in conjunction with our colleagues at RWJBarnabas Health, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and our clinical faculty are committed to exceptional pediatric care,” she said. “We are pleased to welcome children and families into this contemporary new space, which will not only increase the number of children we serve, but also the type of advanced surgical services we provide. We look forward to expanding those services even further as our patients’ needs grow.”

The practice will consist of specialists in pediatric surgery, pediatric neurosurgery and pediatric urology, who have expertise in advanced and minimally invasive surgical procedures and care for children, according to a press release.

University spokesperson Neal Buccino said the relationship between Rutgers Health and RWJBarnabas Health is a public-private partnership, not a merger.

RWJBarnabas Health is a New Jersey nonprofit and Rutgers is a state institution, and both remain separate organizations, each with their own employees, he explained.

Yi-Horng Lee, chief of pediatric surgery at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, said that the new location’s updates extend beyond aesthetic, patient-friendy setups.

He said the new fetal counseling center, for example, enables the Surgical Care for Kids experts to work with expectant parents to plan for immediate surgical needs of children with conditions that may require surgery shortly after birth, such as gastroschisis, where a baby’s intestines have developed outside the baby’s body. 

Other new changes include an intestinal care center specifically for children, coordinated pediatric trauma care, a special procedures room and larger consultation areas for multidisciplinary care of children with advanced surgical needs, according to the press release.

John Gantner, president and chief exectutive officer of Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, said they had high expectations for the children’s hospital because of its deep relationships with Rutgers and RWJBarnabas Health.

“To have a strong children’s hospital, you need a solid pediatric surgical program, and we absolutely have that here,” he said. “Reflecting on recent BMSCH improvements, including additional operating space and the creation of the Center for Advanced Pediatric Surgery, this is a perfect office complement to that space. It’s just the beginning.”

Ryan Stiesi

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