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The University of Chicago Medicine - Comer Children's Hospital

Improving Care Through Research and In Situ Simulation

The Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) at the University of Chicago Medicine Comer Children's Hospital a national leader in pediatric critical care. We are continuously improving our quality of care and outcomes through in situ simulation and research.

In Situ Simulation Center

The Comer Children's pediatric intensive care unit is home to an in situ simulation center -- one of only a few such simulation centers in the country. Guided by critical care faculty experienced in simulation techniques and Stephen Small, MD, director of simulation services for University of Chicago Medicine, physicians, nurses, fellows, medical students and ancillary staff will use high-fidelity mannequins to create realistic clinical scenarios. Integrating the simulation center into the facility where we treat patients allows us to learn and perfect new clinical care procedures, build strong team-based interactions around bedside critical care, and spark research.

Research Leading to the Best Care

Researchers at Comer Children's are actively involved in laboratory and clinical studies designed to improve the care of critically ill children. Our team is developing more effective treatment protocols to help our patients recover faster, with less pain, and fewer complications.

Critical care faculty participate in national studies on influenza infection, blood glucose control in heart and respiratory failure, ventilator-associated infections and severe sepsis through the consortium of Pediatric Acute Lung Injury and Sepsis Investigators. By collaborating with researchers from more than 70 pediatric intensive care units, we are able to help move clinical-translational research forward to drive the future of critical care.

Physician-scientists also enhance and develop clinical protocols as part of the Center for Infection, Immunity and Critical Illness. Through this center, the team aims to identify and stratify patients with the highest risk for infection and work to predict, mitigate and prevent infection before a patient displays signs or symptoms. This new model bridges the gap between the basic and clinical research efforts through the implementation of evidence-based, data-driven medical treatments and protocols.