The pediatric critical care medicine fellowship at Penn State Hershey Children’s Hospital is an ACGME accredited training program designed to provide fellows with an understanding of the pathophysiology of acute, life-threatening disease and injury and the cognitive and procedural skills necessary to care for critically ill pediatric patients.
The Pediatric Critical Care Medicine experience at the Penn State Hershey Children’s Hospital provides a broad multidisciplinary exposure to the many facets of pediatric critical care medicine. The PICU is a 12 bed high acuity multidisciplinary pediatric intensive care unit with a contiguous 14 bed intermediate unit for less acute cases. The PICU has active programs in all aspects of pediatric medicine and surgery including a Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Center, transplantation, and cardiothoracic surgery. Technologies offered include invasive and non-invasive cardiorespiratory monitoring, conventional and non- conventional modes of mechanical ventilation, inhaled respiratory gases including nitric oxide therapy, renal replacement therapies, and extracorporeal membrane oxygenation. The Pediatric Critical Care Service is the primary service responsible for the management of all medical admissions to the PICU. A unique and strong collaborative relationship with our surgical colleagues enables our team to be integrally involved in every aspect of the hour to hour management of all trauma and surgical patients in the PICU. Thus, the critical care fellows will actively participate in the multidisciplinary care of all patients admitted to the PICU. Five full-time board certified critical care attendings staff the intensive care unit at all times. Most recent outcome evaluations utilizing Virtual PICU and the PICU Evaluations System continue to demonstrate that the Penn State Hershey Children’s Hospital Pediatric Intensive Care Unit has a significantly higher severity of illness and significantly lower severity adjusted mortality ratio than most other VPS reference group children hospitals.
The fellowship program provides ample opportunity for both clinical and basic science research including the opportunity to pursue a masters degree in health evaluation sciences. In addition to its own single-center projects, the division of pediatric critical care medicine has collaborated with other children’s hospitals in a number of multicenter studies, and is an active member of the Pediatric Acute Lung Injury and Sepsis Investigators research network. This teaching hospital with contiguous medical school provides an excellent opportunity for collaboration with basic science investigators within the Department of Pediatrics as well as across departments. The Department of Pediatrics and College of Medicine are committed to supporting the development of young pediatric investigators.