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Pediatric dialysis center to provide specialized care for young patients

Pediatric hemodialysis patients will soon be able to receive treatment in a dedicated pediatric dialysis center. The New York State Department of Health approved a Certificate of Need application for an outpatient pediatric dialysis unit that will be housed on the fifth floor of Upstate University Hospital’s Downtown Campus.

“Pediatric patients currently receive care at University Dialysis Center on Genesee Street, which is an adult chronic hemodialysis facility,” explains Scott Schurman, MD, Upstate associate professor of pediatric nephrology. “The new center gives us the opportunity to create a pediatric-friendly environment, from the bays where the kids will receive treatment, to the waiting areas that their families will use.”

Renovations for the center will include the construction of two bays containing chairs specifically manufactured for dialysis. The bays will be able to accommodate a parent or guardian that accompanies the child and will be designed to provide comfort and distraction for the patient.

The pediatric dialysis center’s location in Upstate University Hospital will make it possible for doctors to look in on their patients who come in for treatment and provide access to support services available in the hospital, like the Child Life program. A pediatric nurse will be dedicated as the case manager, which is currently not possible for patients receiving care in the adult center.

Upstate will provide a home dialysis-training program that helps parents and families prepare for caring for a dialysis patient at home. This program will be moved into the Physician Office Building at 725 Irving Avenue, making access to doctors and the center easier for families.

The new pediatric dialysis center is expected to open in spring 2014.

Caption: Pediatric nephrologists Scott Schurman, MD, left, and Lawrence Shoemaker, MD.

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