Our approach to care – a comprehensive pediatric facility

The Bone Marrow Transplant Program has a strong commitment to a comprehensive, full range of care. Our children have access to the hospital's complete array of pediatric specialists, including experts who are leaders in the fields of cardiology, gastroenterology, infectious diseases, nephrology, pulmonology, radiation oncology, and surgery. 

These experienced physicians are all members of the Department of Pediatrics at the Washington University School of Medicine one of the top pediatric programs in the country. They work together with nurses who have specialized training and experience in bone marrow transplant, critical care, and hematology/oncology. 

Bone marrow transplantation is one of the most intensive therapies provided for pediatric patients. Physically stressful and potentially life-threatening, the treatment requires continuous and often long-term hospitalization. In addition to the specialized medical staff, the comprehensive care of our young patients involves a variety of other professionals - physical therapists, pharmacists, nutritionists, and others - who participate in all aspects of patient care from daily rounds to follow-up treatment.

Throughout the transplant process, the team at St. Louis Children's Hospital maintains contact with patients' referring physicians, keeping them aware of the child's progress and special concerns that arise. 

Providing an optimal environment

The Hale Irwin Center for Pediatric Hematology/Oncology includes a newly expanded and renovated transplant unit and outpatient clinic, featuring:

  • A 16-bed bone marrow transplant unit 
  • Private isolation rooms equipped with a HEPA filtration system and state-of-the-art monitoring equipment 
  • New structures to ensure that the unit environment is highly protective against infection, a major complication for patients undergoing bone marrow transplants 
  • An anteroom adjacent to each patient room that is fully stocked with all the materials necessary for nurses to provide patient care and work with optimal efficiency 
  • A lounge area with a bathroom and shower, plus a comfortable place where parents can eat a meal, watch TV, read a book, or simply relax, allowing parents a time outside of the child's room without being too far away

To ensure continuity of care for our families, the inpatient and outpatient staff work closely together. The outpatient clinic is located adjacent to the transplant unit. It offers five exam rooms, three procedure rooms and two isolation rooms. In addition, there are two large, naturally lit infusion areas, overlooking the hospital's Olson Family Garden and Forest Park, where children can spend the hours while receiving their therapy. Parents and children can be there together watching television, playing games, or participating in other activities supervised by our child life specialist or a volunteer.