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Akron Children’s named as one of Parents’ most innovative children’s hospitals

Akron Children's Hospital

09-05-2018 (Ohio)

Akron Children’s Hospital is featured in Parents magazine as one of the 20 “most innovative children’s hospitals” in the United States.

The online story published today at and will be featured in the October print edition of the magazine.

The designation, based on a comprehensive survey sent to members of the Children’s Hospital Association, took into account each hospital’s proven track record of innovation leading to medical advances, as well as its adoption of the latest technologies and efforts to share discoveries with other pediatric centers so more children can benefit.

“Our winning children’s hospitals collectively published more than 16,000 studies last year. We’re in awe of their pioneering treatments, genius medical devices, improved medications, and the steps they’ve taken to make a hospital stay less stressful for little patients and their families,” said Liz Vaccariello, Parents editor-in-chief. “But, most of all, we’re grateful that these hospitals have made it a priority to share their innovations with other centers, making it easier for kids to receive excellent care closer to where they live.”

The 20 children’s hospitals on the list are:

  • Akron Children’s Hospital
  • Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago
  • Boston Children’s Hospital
  • Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta
  • Children’s Hospital Colorado, Aurora
  • Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
  • Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, Milwaukee
  • Children’s National Health System, Washington, D.C.
  • Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center
  • C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital/University of Michigan Health Center, Ann Arbor
  • Johns Hopkins Children’s Center, Baltimore
  • Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Columbus
  • Seattle Children’s Hospital
  • St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Memphis
  • UCLA Mattel Children’s Hospital, Los Angeles
  • UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital, Cleveland
  • University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital, Minneapolis
  • University of Rochester Medical Center’s Golisano Children’s Hospital, New York
  • UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh
  • Yale New Haven Children’s Hospital, Connecticut

“We are honored to be recognized among the best children’s hospitals in the country as a leader in innovation,” said Grace Wakulchik, president of Akron Children’s. ”From being the first children’s hospital to offer radiation-free ablations to treat irregular heartbeat to being one of the very few hospitals to offer gastric stimulation to treat to gastroparesis in children - to name just two examples - we are so proud of our clinicians for being leaders in their pediatric specialties and always searching for new and better ways to care for children.”

The published story puts special emphasis on Akron Children’s work to integrate mental health services into the primary care setting, making these services more accessible for families and helping to remove some of the stigma associated with concerns like depression, anxiety and attention deficient hyperactivity (ADHD) disorder. Of Akron Children’s 27 primary care offices, 26 have pediatric mental health experts working alongside pediatricians.

Akron Children’s is also addressing the demand for mental health services by offering intensive outpatient programs, offering a telehealth program using videoconference equipment, and embedding pediatric psychologists within each clinical area of the hospital so – whether it is a child with diabetes, cancer, cystic fibrosis, epilepsy or some other illness – a therapist with special understanding of the child’s unique concerns is available.

“In addition to our high-tech innovations, children’s hospitals have been pioneers in the concept of patient experience and family-centered care,” said Wakulchik. “We know that taking care of the whole family and designing our facilities to be warm, welcoming and child-friendly advances the healing process. We also work hard to keep children out of the hospital in the first place with our advocacy, child safety and injury prevention efforts, and chronic condition management and care coordination programs.”

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