News and Events
Heart test that saved baby now recommended for all newborns, 12/20/2011
Baby Charlie is the apple of his mother's eye. A little more than three months ago he was born, seemingly healthy, at Tacoma General Hospital. Lindsay explains what happened as the family prepared to leave the hospital for home with their newborn. Read more >>>
State award honors lifesaving newborn heart screening program, 9/19/2011
For their pioneering work in screening newborns for heart defects, MultiCare Tacoma General Family Birth Center and Mary Bridge Pediatric Heart Center have been chosen to receive the 2011 Warren Featherstone Reid Award for Excellence in Health Care. Read more >>>
Mary Bridge & Seattle Children's Collaborate on Cardiac CARE, 3/22/2011Seattle Children’s Hospital and MultiCare Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital today announced the formation of a new 10-year collaboration that will expand pediatric specialty services in the Puget Sound region. Initially, the new partnership will focus on providing cardiac surgery services for infants and children. Read more >>>
SHAUN WHITE IMPRESSES AT MULTICARE'S 'Do Something Healthy' EVENT, 2/8/2011
It’s rare for people to be more impressed by a world-class athlete after they meet him, but that was the consensus after Shaun White’s visit to Tacoma on Tuesday.
The gold-medal winning snowboarder captivated a sold-out audience of more than 1,000 people at MultiCare Health System’s 11th annual “Do Something Healthy” celebration and fitness fair. Read more>>> Watch video>>> View slideshow>>>
Doctor saves siblings with same rare heart defect, 10/26/2010
A surgeon credited with saving a little girl from a deadly heart defect just saved another member of the same family. The blood vessels that link the newborn's lungs to his heart weren't connected normally. It might have gone unnoticed if his parents hadn't insisted on tests, and returned to the Tacoma team that saved their first born.
"It's pretty unusual that two children have exact same anomaly, and that I would repair both of them," said Dr. Ronald Woods. Read more>>> Watch video>>>
CHECKING NEWBORNS for heart defects: The role of pulse oximetry, 8/1/2009
The American Heart Association and American Academy of Pediatrics issued a joint scientific statement on the role of pulse oximetry in examining newborns for critical congenital heart disease (CCHD). "Conclusions: Currently, CCHD is not detected in some newborns until after their hospital discharge, which results in significant morbidity and occasional mortality. Furthermore, routine pulse oximetry performed on asymptomatic newborns after 24 hours of life, but before hospital discharge, may detect CCHD. Routine pulse oximetry performed after 24 hours in hospitals that have on-site pediatric cardiovascular services incurs very low cost and risk of harm. Future studies in larger populations and across a broad range of newborn delivery systems are needed to determine whether this practice should become standard of care in the routine assessment of the neonate."
Read the full article in Pediatrics or Circulation.
TREE House: A PLACE FOR FAMILIES, 6/25/2009
When your child is in the hospital, the last thing you want to do is leave at night and make a long drive home. But when you don't live near the hospital and don't have a place to stay, sleep, even just take a shower, what are you to do? Read more>>>
SUPPORT GROUP, 4/1/2009
Join our Support Group for families of children with heart conditions….
We have formed a Mended Little Hearts support group in the Puget Sound area to help families that have a child with a congenital heart defect or heart disease. There is hope and you are not alone. Please join us for our monthly family meetings (usually the 1st Tuesday of the month, 5:30-7:00 p.m.). Separate groups for siblings and teens are offered. Childcare, dinner and parking are provided.
Check the Events Calendar for locations and details. To RSVP, receive our newsletter, or obtain more information, please contact Darcie Miller at 253-858-3065 or PugetSoundWA@mendedlittlehearts.org.
'If it weren't for the screening she wouldn't be here', 2/13/2009
Last Valentine's Day, Tacoma General Hospital started screening newborns for heart defects. If they found just one, they said, the program would be a success. Elisa Jaffe, KOMO4 News, shows us one of the little lives that's been saved. Watch the video >>>
NEWBORN SCREENING FOR HEART DEFECTS, 2/9/2009
Tacoma General Hospital, aided by the Mary Bridge Pediatric Heart Program, is the only hospital in the state to screen newborns for congenital heart defects (CHDs) prior to discharge.
A pulse oximetry screening study was launched on February 14, 2008 (Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Day), with Mary Bridge Cardiothoracic Surgeon Ronald Woods, MD, PhD, as the principal investigator. The study is supported in part by a grant from the Fraternal order of the Eagles, and has received IRB approval for continuation in 2009. The goal of this effort is to diagnose and treat children with heart defects early.
CHDs occur in approximately 1:100 births and are the leading cause of newborn and infant death. Yet, heart defects are sometimes overlooked and not routinely diagnosed in newborns. Early detection and early treatment lead to better outcomes through surgery, interventional cardiology procedures, and medication. When a baby born at Tacoma General (TG) is diagnosed with a heart defect, the Mary Bridge Pediatric Heart Program team is available on-site for diagnosis and treatment.
In 2008, nearly 2,200 babies in TG's Women & Newborn Center were screened with pulse oximetry monitoring. Parental consent is obtained, and parents are provided educational materials on the signs and symptoms of heart defects in infants and children. Babies with two lower-than-expected oxygen saturation levels have an echocardiogram prior to discharge.
"The study has successfully identified two newborns with heart defects," says Diane Zook, research study coordinator. Neither neonate displayed symptoms of a cardiac abnormality. One infant underwent uneventful repair of coarctation of the aorta in August. Another infant had successful open heart surgery for repair of total anomalous pulmonary venous connection, ventricular septal defect, atrial septal defect and patent ductus arteriosus in October. Both infants are doing well and are being followed closely.
To request study brochures for your office, or to refer a patient to this study, contact the Mary Bridge Pediatric Heart Program at 253-403-3527.
Newborn Screening for Heart Defects, 2/14/2008Tacoma General Hospital, Women & Newborn Center, in collaboration with the Pediatric Heart Center at Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital, has begun a screening program to identify heart defects in newborns. This program is the first of its kind in the State of Washington, and aims to diagnose and treat heart defects early.
Heart defects are the most common birth defect, occurring in 1 out of every 100 live births. Left undiagnosed and untreated, heart defects are the leading cause of newborn and infant death.
Although some babies will be diagnosed before birth or at birth, sometimes the diagnosis is not made until days, weeks, months or even years later. The signs and symptoms of heart defects can be subtle and may go unrecognized by parents, caregivers, and sometimes even health care providers. As an educational component of the study, parents will be provided with the signs and symptoms of heart defects in infants and children.
Early detection and early treatment lead to better outcomes. Most heart defects can be corrected or improved with surgery, procedures and/or medications. Any baby identified with a critical cardiac defect could have life-saving surgery performed prior to discharge from the hospital.
This study is being launched on Valentine's Day, which is also Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Day. The principle investigator is Dr. Ronald Woods, chief of pediatric cardiothoracic surgery at Mary Bridge Pediatric Heart Center. The study is supported in part by a grant from the Fraternal Order of the Eagles. Similar evaluations are underway at Vanderbilt University, University of Michigan and University of Birmingham.
The inspiration for the study came from a 14-month-old child in NY, who died from an undiagnosed heart defect in 2005. Mary Bridge and Tacoma General hope to name the new testing procedure after this child.
Newborn Screening Program - Pulse Oximetry Screening To Detect Congenital Heart Defects, 10/1/2007MultiCare Health System’s Institutional Review Board recently approved a study to utilize pulse oximetry technology to screen normal newborns for congenital heart disease (CHD). Approximately 1 out of 100 babies are born with congenital heart defects, but finding babies with CHD is not easy.
Current practice for screening newborns is to look for symptoms and listen for murmurs in early exams. More extensive cardiac screening has not been widely pursued at MultiCare or elsewhere because current diagnostics do not make good first-level screening tools. Electrocardiograms (EKGs) are prone to false positives and echocardiograms, while more accurate, are also more expensive.
A recent research trial of pulse oximetry screening for CHD was conducted with approximately 11,000 babies who had passed stethoscope evaluations. Three potentially life-threatening cardiac defects were found in the trial and two defects were missed (they were later found and treated). But a better-than-50 percent detection rate is good considering the cost of the screening is low, given that pulse oximetry equipment is readily available.
Pediatric cardiologists and women and newborn service providers believe that the addition of these screenings will improve the level of care for newborns at MultiCare’s Tacoma General Hospital and add to the research being conducted in this area.
Grants from the Fraternal Order of Eagles help support this screening protocol. These grant dollars will support education and communication for physicians and other health care personnel, as well as for families whose children will participate in the screening. This research is scheduled to begin in early 2008.
For more information about this research effort, please contact the Mary Bridge Pediatric Heart Program at 253-403-3527.
- A mother's fight for newborn hearts, Nov 2011
- DHHS Secretary adopts recommendation for universal newborn heart screening, Sep 2011
- State award honors lifesaving newborn heart screening program, Sep 2011
- Strategies for Implementing Screening for Critical Congenital Heart Disease, AAP, Aug 2011
- Doctors call for standard screening of newborns' hearts, Jul 2011
- Cyclists bond over bikes with Mary Bridge heart patient
- Heart patient climbs higher
- Doctor saves siblings with same rare heart defect, Oct 2010
- BlessHerHeart.org - Simple screening could save a life
- Preview - public statement (BlessHerHeart.org) on pulse oximetry screening for heart defects, ACHDNC, Washington, DC, May 2010
- Details - Secretary's Advisory Committee on Heritable Disorders in Newborns and Children (ACHDNC), universal newborn screening for heart defects, Jan 2010
- Preview - public statement (1in100.org) on pulse oximetry newborn screening for heart defects, ACHDNC, Washington DC, Jan 2010
- Congenital heart disease screening toolkit (CNMC)
- Passing together, a pair of heroes
- Routine heart screening for kids - the future of pediatric heart care?
- MultiCare named 'Most Wired' and 'Most Wireless' Health System
- 'If it weren't for the screening she wouldn't be here'
- Newborn Screening for Heart Defects: Update Feb 2009
- Inside the newborn ICU at Tacoma General - Click here to watch video of heart surgery: Patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) ligation
- Send a patient a cheer card
- Create a CarePage for your loved one
- A Tale of Two Hearts: Families share a close bond after similar hospital experiences
- A Baby's Heart: The case for screening newborns for congenital heart defects
- Mary Bridge, Swedish establish joint pediatric heart surgery program