The Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital offers a broad spectrum of clinical, health, and wellness services and programs to meet the needs of our patients and their families. We provide care for children, adolescents, and young adults from birth to age 22.
Audiologists are healthcare providers trained in the hearing sciences. These specialists provide screening, evaluation, and treatment programs starting at birth. Our audiologists provide a range of services relating to permanent and temporary hearing loss, including diagnostic, rehabilitation, and outreach services. We perform complete audiological assessments using both behavioral and electrophysiological measures and state-of-the-art equipment and techniques. We also perform Central Auditory Processing testing, evaluations for hearing aids and other related devices, and neurological ABrs and balance testing (ENG/VNG). Our Cochlear Implant program serves patients with severe to profound hearing loss.
Your child would see an audiologist if he or she has problems hearing—either from birth
or as a result of an illness or injury.
Blood and Marrow Transplantation
The Blood and Marrow Transplant Program is located at the Institute for Pediatric Cancer and Blood Disorders. Established in 1990, it is the only pediatric stem cell transplant program in the state of New Jersey. Our program has been approved by the Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy since 1998. The program performs autologous (using the patient’s own blood) and allogeneic (using a separate donor) transplants. Diseases we treat include malignant diseases, non-malignant hematologic diseases, immunodeficiency, and metabolic disorders.
Cancer Survivors – Cure & Beyond
Childhood cancer survivors often have medical and psychosocial concerns that are different from their peers. Our dedicated team of physicians, nurses, social workers, psychologists, and educators provide ongoing services such as education for the survivor about his or her previous diagnosis and therapy, with recommendations for further care; assistance in transitioning to adult medical services; and observation and documentation of late effects. The freestanding, off-site program offers a warm, safe, and comfortable environment to address the unique concerns of its survivors.
Infants, children, and young adults who have heart disease should be cared for by heart specialists who are also specially trained in treating young patients. At the Pediatric Center for Heart Disease, we diagnose, treat, and monitor only children who were either born with (congenital) or who developed heart disease. We offer a full range of testing specifically designed for children, including: echocardiography, treadmill stress testing, Holter (ambulatory) and event monitoring, fetal echocardiography, cardiac pacemaker/defibrillator interrogation, and electrocardiograms. Your doctor can give you more information about these tests.
At the Pediatric Center for Heart Disease, we involve families in every aspect of care. We are one of the few programs in the country to offer a unique family approach to treating hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. With this approach, we screen not only the patient, but also his or her immediate and extended family. This unique course of treatment includes genetic testing. The Pediatric Center for Heart Disease also provides outreach services such as informative talks, presentations and lectures to members of the community and other healthcare professionals.
Our unique team approach brings together specialist board-certified pediatric cardiologists and pediatric cardiology nurses who form the core care team for your child. This team approach has been proven to improve outcomes and provide a better experience for the patient and his or her family.
Child Abuse and Neglect Services
Audrey Hepburn Children’s House
The Audrey Hepburn Children’s House provides a safe and private environment for infants, children, and adolescents who are suspected victims of abuse. Professionals with clinical expertise in the diagnosis and treatment of child abuse provide a full range of diagnostic and treatment services to children and their families. The Audrey Hepburn Children’s House is a state-designated Regional Diagnostic Center for Child Abuse and Neglect, serving Bergen, Passaic, Hudson, Morris, Sussex and Warren counties. The facility provides a unique environment that is specifically designed to address all aspects of child maltreatment in a professional, confidential, and compassionate manner.
Child Life Services
Child life specialists and creative arts therapists are important parts of the collaborative team that provides care to children at the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital. These trained professionals provide education and emotional support to help children and their families cope with the experience of illness and being in the hospital. A child life specialist/creative arts therapist is an expert in child development, who promotes effective coping through play, psychological preparation, and self-expression. These therapists can help a hospitalized child feel safe in what can be a very frightening environment. Through their work, they can help the child reduce stress and develop positive coping skills.
Day Accommodation Suite
For young patients who require transfusions, infusions, blood tests, or are participating in clinical trials, visits to the hospital may be frequent, and unwelcome. The Day Accommodation Suite offers our patients (from infancy to age 22) a comfortable, soothing environment for their hospital visits that is in close proximity to medical services.
Issues with skin can be uncomfortable, embarrassing, and sometimes dangerous. Proper diagnosis and treatment by a dermatologist who specializes in the skin diseases of children is important. The Pediatric and Adolescent Dermatology Center at the Children’s Hospital is a fully accredited pediatric subspecialty program with a state-of-the-art outpatient facility. We use the latest medications and advanced technology to diagnose and treat all types of skin diseases and disorders, including acne, atopic dermatitis, psoriasis, allergic reactions, warts, molluscum, moles, skin infections, alopecia areata, vitiligo, and infantile hemangiomas, as well as other birthmarks. Our advanced facility enables us to perform minor surgical procedures, as well as laser therapy with anesthesia, if necessary, in infants, children and adolescents. We are home to New Jersey’s first academic dermatology program.
Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics
The Institute for Child Development offers comprehensive evaluation and treatment for children and adolescents who have problems with growth, development, and behavior. Our professional staff includes developmental/behavioral pediatricians, a nurse, speech/language pathologists, occupational therapists, and physical therapists, who work together as a team to provide your child with comprehensive care. Some of the conditions we evaluate and treat include autism spectrum disorders, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, cerebral palsy, fetal alcohol spectrum disorders, fragile X syndrome, and Tourette syndrome. In addition to providing clinical services for children and their parents, our professionals offer educational programs for other healthcare professionals and consultative services for those involved in the care of children with special needs.
As one of the country’s largest and most comprehensive multidisciplinary evaluation and treatment programs, The Institute for Child Development is a resource for parents and children. When a child has trouble learning, speaking, or acting, we are here for you with answers, help, and treatment.
The Judy Center
The JUDY Center for Down Syndrome is a consultative service that enhances the lives of individuals with Down syndrome as they progress through childhood, adolescence, and adulthood. Providing a bridge between pediatric and adult healthcare services, we help individuals and their families navigate the healthcare system. With consent of the individual or family, our professionals will meet with other agencies and healthcare professionals to discuss the treatment and care of the individual with Down syndrome or other lifelong conditions.
SIDS Center of New Jersey
The Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) Center of New Jersey (SCNJ) is a statewide program that supports bereaved families during times of crisis. The program is based at both the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital at HackensackUMC and Rutgers-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in New Brunswick. Our program offers comfort to families, while working to fulfill our 3-pronged mission of bereavement support, public education, and participation in ongoing research efforts. We offer free one-year case management follow-up for all referred families.
Everybody reacts differently when their child is diagnosed with a serious, chronic or life-threatening illness. But one thing is true for everybody—you have to have a realistic view of the situation and find a way to adjust. Sometimes, that is not so easy. Our highly qualified social workers work with children and their families to help cope with the effects of illness and treatment. They can help the patient and family members adjust to living with a chronic or acute medical condition. Our social workers are all trained and experienced in working with different types of families and are sensitive to cultural differences.
Endocrine Disorders and Diabetes
The MOLLY Center uses a multidisciplinary approach to give patients and their families an understanding of diabetes and other endocrine disorders. Besides diabetes, some of the conditions we treat include thyroid disease, metabolic bone disease, pituitary and adrenal conditions, growth and gonadal disorders, and nutrition disorders. Board-certified pediatric endocrinologists, advanced practice nurses, certified diabetes educators, registered nutritionists, licensed social workers, medical assistants, and a creative arts therapist offer the most current treatment options to ensure high-quality, holistic, and effective treatment.
We use a family-centered approach, providing you and your child with the necessary skills and helping you gain confidence in your ability to manage illness on a day-to-day basis. Teens and their families are given help transitioning to independent care, so they can manage their own medical conditions when they are ready to leave home for college or work.
The Pediatric Emergency Department provides prompt treatment for emergencies, urgent and non-urgent conditions. We operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, caring for patients ranging in age from infants to 22 years. Our specialized medical team consists of experienced and highly trained board-certified pediatric emergency medicine physicians, pediatricians, pediatric advanced practice nurses and staff nurses who work together to diagnose and treat children’s injuries and illnesses. Dedicated clerical associates, patient care technicians, social workers, and child life specialists are committed to making what can be an intimidating and frightening experience easier to handle.
Our Pediatric Telephone Triage Call Center provides you with reliable healthcare advice when your regular pediatrician’s office is closed. A registered nurse will assess your child’s illness by telephone and give you appropriate medical advice based on accepted guidelines. Records will then be forwarded to your child’s regular doctor (primary care provider) for his or her review and follow-up.
For children and adolescents aged 8 to 18, losing weight can be difficult even when there is a good medical reason. Healthy Futures is a 12-week, medically based, comprehensive weight management program. The program improves overall health and quality of life and teaches about healthy food choices, and addresses the social and emotional effects of being overweight. All participants are evaluated by a board-certified endocrinologist and registered physical therapists.
At Healthy Futures, our team of specialists, including a psychologist, child life specialists, a registered dietitian, and fitness instructors work with participants and their families, to develop healthy habits in a fun and supportive environment.
Gastroenterology and Nutrition
Children and adolescents can suffer from a range of stomach disorders that can affect daily living and quality of life. The specialists in the Division of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition are dedicated to diagnosing and treating these conditions. These include inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis), celiac disease, gastroesophageal reflux disease, pancreatic disease, liver problems, failure to thrive, food allergies, abdominal pain, diarrhea, and constipation. Another important part of our mission involves education and support. To accomplish that, we offer nursing education programs, nutrition support, community outreach, and social support services, including support groups for inflammatory bowel disease, eosinophilic esophagitis, and celiac disease.
Our specialized team includes board-certified pediatric gastroenterologists, nurses who have advanced training in dealing with children, a nutritionist, and a social worker. We offer a full range of services for children with gastroenterological problems, including inpatient consultations, outpatient evaluation, endoscopic procedures, and other diagnostic testing.
Genetics and Genetic Counseling
The Genetics Service has been a leader in clinical genetics in the metropolitan area for more than 30 years, offering genetic services and testing for both children and adults. All patients in the Service are seen by board-certified medical geneticists and counselors in the areas of prenatal, cancer, pediatric, and adult genetics. Patients can also benefit from the expertise of all the doctors in the HackensackUMC network if treatment is required. The Genetics Service is also a NJ Department of Health-designated newborn screening follow-up center.
Patients are evaluated for risk assessment, testing, and management, as well as supportive counseling. Our goal is to improve the lives of our patients by providing them with the important information they need to make the best possible decisions.
Hematology and Oncology
Institute for Pediatric Cancer and Blood Disorders
We provide hematology, oncology, blood and marrow transplant, and other pediatric specialty programs. In addition, we offer programs in neuro-oncology, pediatric surgery, radiation therapy, child life and creative art therapy, psychology, social work, and a school liaison program. A robust research and clinical trial program provides many patients with varied state-of-the-art treatment options. Physicians provide cutting edge therapies. The outpatient programs are located in the Don Imus-WFAN Pediatric Center at HackensackUMC. This facility provides a comfortable atmosphere for patients and their families while children are undergoing treatment. It includes an infusion room for outpatient chemotherapy and transfusion therapy, six examination rooms, a procedure room, recovery room, clinical laboratory and blood-drawing room, playroom for school-aged children, adolescent lounge, schoolroom, patient library, and age-specific group therapy rooms. The inpatient unit is located in the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital, which features private patient rooms, children’s playrooms, and family kitchen areas in a family-friendly environment.
If your child is admitted to the hospital, his or her regular pediatrician may be in charge of care there. Sometimes, though, a child’s hospital care is managed by a doctor who specializes in caring for hospitalized patients. These individuals, often called hospitalists, are fully trained, board-certified pediatricians, whose entire focus is in caring for children admitted to the hospital for a wide variety of childhood illnesses. They work closely with other specialists—such as surgeons—to ensure coordination of care. They also make sure that the child’s regular pediatrician is kept current on his or her treatment and progress while in the Hospital.
The Steven and Richard Bader Immunological Institute
A child with a primary immune deficiency has an immune system that does not work at all, or does not work well, usually due to a hereditary or genetic defect. When that happens, the child will have a reduced ability to resist or get rid of an infectious disease. At the Immunological Unit, we diagnose and treat children with frequent infections and possible immune deficiency. Our specialty team includes physicians in the fields of pediatric immunology and infectious diseases, and we consult frequently with other specialists in the areas of allergy and hematology. Our facility has specialized on-site laboratories that are can analyze immune function, and have microbiologic and full viral diagnostic capabilities.
Primary immune deficiencies can present themselves in many ways, including recurring infections, unusual infections, or autoimmune diseases.
Our specialists provide inpatient and outpatient consultation with pediatricians and specialists from other disciplines to diagnose and treat children and adolescents who have contracted
or other infectious diseases. We also provide community education programs about illness and illness prevention. Our TravelKids service is a comprehensive pre-travel counseling and immunization program for children and families traveling outside the United States.
Children can contract different kinds of infectious diseases, and they are different from those that adults can get. For example, children can contract all types of bacterial, parasitic, viral, or fungal infections that involve the respiratory system, stomach and intestinal tract, eyes, ears, or skin.
Being hospitalized is stressful for both the child who is the patient and his or her family. The inpatient unit at the Children’s Hospital is specially designed to help minimize that stress and to encourage family participation in their child’s care. Private patient rooms have their own bathrooms as well as Internet access and flat screen TVs, sleeping facilities for parents and guardians, room service, and a family kitchen area. This helps to make the experience as pleasant as possible in a healing and soothing environment. While hospitalized, children are cared for by a team of caregivers that includes board-certified pediatricians and pediatric subspecialists, advanced practice nurses, highly skilled and trained staff nurses, patient care techs, social workers, child life specialists, respiratory therapists, nutritionists and other healthcare providers as needed.
The units in the children’s hospital include a general pediatric unit, a hematology/oncology/bone marrow transplant unit, epilepsy monitoring unit, a pediatric intensive care unit (PICU), and neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), as well as a separate pediatric emergency department located inside the children’s hospital. Our three intensive care areas (PICU, NICU and pediatric emergency room) are staffed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by dedicated, board certified physicians.
The Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) provides evidence-based critical care to all children from the newborn (neonatal) period through their 22nd birthdays in a family-centered care setting. Evidence-based means that our clinical decisions are based on a combination of clinical experience, patient and family preferences, and the best results (evidence) from research.
The PICU is staffed 24/7 with physicians and nurses who specialize in taking care of children. A multidisciplinary team consisting of board-certified pediatric critical care physicians, subspecialists, nurses, nutritionists, pharmacists, social workers, child life therapists, and discharge planners work together to develop a comprehensive plan of care that meets the unique needs of each child and family.
Because our PICU is part of both a state-designated children’s hospital and a state-designated trauma center, patients receive the best, most advanced care possible. We are always mindful that we are treating children and their families, and all care is geared to providing high-quality care while minimizing stress as much as possible.
The Division of Neonatology provides the highest level of care for high-risk mothers and acutely ill newborns in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, or NICU. Fulltime, board-certified neonatologists provide in-hospital coverage 24 hours a day. Other specialists on our team that include highly skilled neonatal hospitalists, advanced practice clinicians, neonatology nurses, clinical nurse specialists, dedicated respiratory therapists, pediatric occupational/physical therapists, genetic counselors, a child life team, lactation consultants, social workers, nutritionists, and pharmacists. Our treatment capabilities include nitric oxide, high frequency ventilators, hypothermia medical management program and full neonatal surgery capabilities.
The Division of Neonatology is a Level IV regional Perinatal Center. That means that we are equipped to provide the highest level of care for newborns with the highest needs. Our facility has a full range of pediatric medical and surgical subspecialties, as well as pediatric anesthesiologists on site.
Center for Pediatric Kidney Diseases
The Center provides a complete range of services for children suffering from kidney diseases and hypertension. Our 2 fulltime, board-certified pediatric nephrologists have advanced training in the diagnosis and treatment of kidney disease and hypertension in children. They, together with other members of the pediatric nephrology team, provide inpatient and outpatient consultations, diagnosis, and long-term medical management for various kidney diseases. Other services include forms of kidney replacement therapy for children suffering from bed wetting, end-stage kidney failure, hypertension, or who are in need of a kidney transplant.
Our service is a comprehensive, patient-centered program that provides diagnosis and treatment for a range of neurologic disorders in infants, children, adolescents, and young adults. Our board-certified neurologists have advanced, specialized training and years of experience treating disorders such as
Seizures and epilepsy
Metabolic disorders including mitochondrial disorders and genetic syndromes
Neuromuscular disorders such as muscular dystrophy
Tumors and pseudo tumor cerebri
Attention deficit disorder
For children with epilepsy, we offer assessment, evaluation, and treatment—including an advanced inpatient video EEG monitoring unit, routine and ambulatory EEG testing, and a multimodal treatment approach. Our concussion program offers care for children suffering from mild traumatic brain injury due to sports injuries or accidents. We provide training and diagnostic support and frequently work together with the individual child’s pediatrician and school to ensure a safe and timely return to school and sports activities.
Conditions that affect the brain or nervous system can be complicated and difficult to treat. Our team approach ensures that your child has the best care and achieves the best possible outcomes. We are with you every step of the way, answering questions and making sure that you understand what is happening.
Otolaryngology (Ear, Nose and Throat)
The best kind of treatment for children and adolescents with ear, nose and throat (ENT) problems often involves a team of specialists collaborating. Our pediatric otolaryngology team—all physicians with advanced training—often works with other specialists such as pulmonology, audiology, speech-language pathology, and your family—to provide your child with the highest quality care. We provide comprehensive management of medical and surgical diseases of the ears, nose, and throat from birth through adolescence. This includes:
Common ENT problems such as
More complex problems such as
We perform diagnostic, flexible and rigid endoscopic examinations of air, food and sinus passages, endoscopic sinus surgery, myringotomy (ear tubes), and management of patients with hearing loss and balance disorders.
Through our collaborative approach, we work closely with your child’s pediatrician and other specialists to provide complete and comprehensive care for ear, nose and throat disorders. Our doctors and nurses understand the special needs of children and do their best to minimize anxiety, pain, and discomfort.
Pain and Palliative Care
The David Center
At The David Center, we coordinate care and alleviate symptoms to help lessen the pain of children with chronic and serious illnesses. There is no set formula: every child suffering from pain has different needs. We assess each child’s situation individually and determine what his or her needs are. Our service utilizes Child Life Specialists, Creative Arts Therapists and Social Workers to provide a spectrum of care based on each child’s individual needs. If indicated, referrals are made to other providers, such as other medical specialists, physical or occupational therapists, psychologists, bereavement specialists, spiritual care. The Center is staffed by a multidisciplinary team of physicians, advanced practice nurses, licensed clinical social workers, child life specialists and creative art therapists who are all specially trained to provide care to children suffering from pain.
Palliative care is different from treatment used to cure an illness. The goals of palliative care are to relieve symptoms and improve quality of life for patients with serious or advanced illness. Depending on the patient’s needs, palliative care can be given along with curative treatments. The treatment plan is based on each child’s individual needs.
Families from all over come to the Children’s Hospital to have surgery because of our expertise and our family-focused care. Our outstanding surgeons, trained at the nation’s top programs, are nationally recognized leaders, clinical researchers, and educators in pediatric surgery who have a long history of providing advanced and compassionate treatment to their patients.
The Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital collaborates with the NYU Langone Medical Center’s Division of Pediatric Surgery to bring together renowned pediatric surgeons who provide world-class care to our patients. All are board-certified in both general and pediatric surgery, and have advanced expertise in pediatric general, thoracic and minimally invasive surgery, as well as prenatal counseling. We offer advanced surgical interventions for infants, children and adolescents including minimally access surgery of the chest and abdomen, surgical oncology care, vascular malformations, bowel deformities, and pre- and postnatal care of congenital birth defects.
Surgery on young patients requires a very specific set of skills, perfected by experience and backed up by all the resources of a dedicated children’s hospital. Each year, our exceptional surgical team performs thousands of procedures—from the simplest to the most complex—on babies, infants, children, adolescents, and young adults. As a parent, you can rest assured that this experience translates into the best possible outcomes and compassionate care for your child in a safe and nurturing environment.
The Pediatric Pulmonology Section offers comprehensive, state-of-the-art care for lungs and breathing issues (respiratory care) for infants, children and adolescents. Children who are admitted to the hospital with acute asthma are offered the latest therapies and have implemented standardized treatment protocols that have led to improved quality of care for all children. While we see many children with asthma, we also treat a diverse range of conditions, including:
the evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment of persistent cough
chronic and recurrent pneumonia
sleep disorders and related breathing abnormalitie
respiratory technology-dependent children
other respiratory problems as inpatients and outpatients
The Pediatric Pulmonary Function Laboratory utilizes child-friendly equipment to measure lung function, with a staff of experienced therapists who know how to put children—and their parents—at ease. Our board certified pediatric sleep physician evaluates children with sleep disorders, including sleep-disordered breathing, at the accredited Institute for
Sleep-Wake Disorders at HackensackUMC.
For children with lungs and breathing issues, the Children’s Hospital offers outstanding care that is designed specifically for children, delivered by world-class physicians and experienced therapists.
Arthritis can be a part of many different childhood illnesses, such as juvenile rheumatoid arthritis (JRA), systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), dermatomyositis (JDMS), scleroderma, and vasculitis. Children and teens with arthritis and other inflammatory and autoimmune disorders such as lupus, dermatomyositis, and vasculitis receive scientifically advanced, compassionate care from our internationally-recognized pediatric rheumatologists and our team of registered nurses. They work closely with physical therapists, occupational therapists, pain management specialists, social workers, child life therapists, ophthalmologists, gastroenterologists, and other pediatric subspecialists to provide comprehensive care to all children with rheumatic diseases. Our active involvement in national and international research initiatives ensures that our patients have access to the latest advances in therapy.
Arthritis can affect a child’s physical, intellectual, emotional, and social development. The team treatment approach that we offer helps children and teens with arthritis and other inflammatory and autoimmune disorders to deal with pain and other issues, and achieve normalized growth and development.