Department of Emergency Medicine In the News

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Number One

Boston Children’s Hospital ranked top by US News

The 2014-15 edition of U.S.News & World Report's "Best Children's Hospitals" has been released, and we are proud to announce that Boston Children's Hospital is ranked #1 on the Honor Roll and ranked #1 in 8 out of 10 evaluated specialties.

Findings

Safely Limiting Unnecessary CT Scans for Head Injuries

Head injuries are common reasons for ER visits for children.  In these cases, the goals are not only to diagnose any significant injuries to the brain, but to also minimize the exposure to radiation of cranial computed tomography scans (head CTs) if possible.  Fortunately, most children who have head injuries do not have any serious injuries that require surgery or hospitalization. 

Dr. Lise Nigrovic and colleagues developed a quality improvement project that included an evidence-based guideline outlining concerning symptoms that predict serious brain injury, indicating when head CTs should be done, as well as when CTs are not needed.  This project successfully reduced the number of CTs without missing any significant injuries, and these improvements have been sustained over the following years.  The results were published in the June issue of Pediatrics journal.

Seat Belts Save Lives

In a recently published research study in the June issue of Annals of Internal Medicine journal, Dr. Lois Lee and colleagues examined how seat belt laws in the United States were related to fatal motor vehicle crashes (MVCs).  A “primary” seat belt law means that a person can be ticketed solely for not wearing a seat belt, whereas a “secondary” law only allows for ticketing for not wearing seat belts in the setting of other violations.  The team reported that states that had primary seat belt laws also had lower rates of deaths due to MVCs. So please buckle up.

Quality & Safety

At Boston Children’s Hospital, we believe that patients and families deserve to know whether the hospital where they have chosen to receive their care meets the highest standards and is committed to excellence.  Through our Program for Patient Safety and Quality, we continually monitor and improve the care we provide to our patients. Since the diseases and chronic conditions that affect children and adolescents are quite different from those of adults, it is often not appropriate to use adult measures to evaluate the quality of pediatric care.  That’s why we have taken a leadership role in developing scientifically sound methods to measure the quality of care provided to all children and adolescents.

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 We aim to solve some of the world’s greatest pediatric health problems. Some ways we do this stem from scientific research: Understanding diseases deeply—even at the cellular or molecular level—leads to new drugs and therapies. Other discoveries arise from moments spent at patients’ bedsides, when doctors and nurses see opportunities to improve care. This approach, which we call “clinical innovations,” often requires us to develop entirely new tools or come up with inventive strategies. This creative form of innovation is the path by which many major improvements in health care have been made.

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The future of pediatrics will be forged by thinking differently, breaking paradigms and joining together in a shared vision of tackling the toughest challenges before us.”
- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO

Boston Children's Hospital 300 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115 617-355-6000 | 800-355-7944

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