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Bridging the Gap Between the Care for Children Given at PEDs and EDs in Community Hospitals

Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital of New York-Presbyterian, Columbia University

Aimed at helping babies cared for in community emergency departments where very ill infants and children are seen only occasionally, this program will provide general emergency medicine physicians with the training necessary to bridge the gap between the care given for babies and children at pediatric emergency departments (PEDs) and general emergency departments (EDs). Specifically, R Baby Foundation has funded the establishment of a more effective training module by leveraging real-life examples and setting up a novel learning and testing approach.


This past year, the Columbia University Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital’s R Baby Fever in Infants Website for emergency physicians, headed by Dr. Meridith Sonnett, was piloted on 200 physicians. Three emergency departments adopted the R Baby guideline as their standard practice for evaluating infants with fever, and two leading Emergency Medicine Residency Training Programs incorporated the R Baby content into their educational curricula. The vast majority of trainees reported increased confidence and comfortableness in handling infants under 90 days old. This will now provide a tool to test the knowledge and competency of these emergency physicians-in-training in this key area of emergency pediatrics. Several manuscripts are in preparation for journal submission and presentation, and the program will be showcased this January at a national conference for emergency medicine doctors.

Columbia University, working with Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital of New York-Presbyterian, set up an initial platform comprising of real life examples of sick infants under one year of age to establish an educational communications service. In year one, the program began improving physician knowledge at Columbia. This program is being tested at two NYC hospitals with a plan to optimize and then be made available to the entire NYC base of PED ED and community ED practitioners, with a national program ultimately contemplated. The national programs would vary and focus on two distinct populations of practitioners 1) IT program which is available to medical student and resident training programs through the Council on Medical Student Education in Pediatrics, the Association of American Medical Colleges and PECARN (Pediatric Emergency Care Applied Research Network); 2) Phone consultation and the IT fever guideline (for community EM practitioners).
Columbia’s achievements included establishing an online case repository with ninety cases including important clinical variants and preliminary development of an online reference website including treatment guidelines and descriptions of evidence-based data supporting the guidelines. Virtual experts were also made available as an enhancement to this online, “digital” and ongoing educational and informational platform.


Joel Berezow, MD Full profile »
Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital
Office: 212-305-9825

Richard A. Polin, MD Full profile »
Columbia University - Division of Neonatology
Office: 212-305-5827

Martin Pusic, MD, MPh Full profile »
Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital
Office: 212-305-9825

Meridith Sonnet, MD Full profile »
Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital
Office: 212-305-8077