Lehigh Valley, Pa.,
18:55 PM

Grand Opening Held for Children’s Cancer and Multipurpose Infusion Center at Lehigh Valley Children’s Hospital

Children being treated for cancer at Lehigh Valley Children’s Hospital now have a new facility to go to for care that is not only child-friendly but entirely devoted to the health problems of children.

The Children’s Cancer and Multipurpose Infusion Center is the final piece to the Children’s Specialty Center at 1210 S. Cedar Crest Blvd., on the campus of Lehigh Valley Hospital–Cedar Crest. When the service begins taking patients on July 24, the entire building will be devoted to pediatric specialties. All of these services are part of Lehigh Valley Children’s Hospital.

The goal of the Children’s Specialty Center is to provide an environment that is as comfortable for children and as convenient for their families as possible. The Children’s Cancer and Multipurpose Infusion Center is typical of the surrounding pediatric specialties in that it provides numerous kid-friendly amenities in an attempt to put children and their families at ease in often difficult circumstances.

And few circumstances are more difficult than a cancer diagnosis for a child.

“This new Children’s Cancer and Multipurpose Infusion Center represents hope against a disease that occurs regularly and randomly, and spares no ethnic group, or no socioeconomic or geographic region,” says Brian Nester, DO, MBA, FACOEP, President and Chief Executive Officer of Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN). “The good news is with major treatment advances in the past few decades, children with cancer are surviving longer than ever. And with research and clinical trial collaborations such as the LVHN Cancer Institute with Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, the news will continue to get better.”

LVPG Pediatric Hematology Oncology–Muhlenberg in Bethlehem, which features providers Nathan Hagstrom, MD, MHCM, Lydia Boateng, MD, and Felipe Bautista Otanez, MD, will be relocated to the larger Children’s Cancer and Multipurpose Infusion Center space, which includes the following amenities:

  • 5 Infusion Bays; 4 Exam Rooms – Located in the main open area of the unit, each infusion bay has a TV set equipped with a gaming system.
  • 2 Negative Pressure/Isolation Infusion Rooms – For children who can’t be exposed to an open environment with the rest of the infusion bays
  • Procedure Room – Now certain procedures such as lumbar punctures can be performed in the unit rather than in a hospital setting, which wasn’t possible in the Bethlehem facility.
  • Family Resource Room – A dedicated space for families with lockers to store items, educational materials and computers
  • Teen Game Room – TV and gaming system room more appropriate to older children. The room also includes an infusion chair.
  • Tree of Life – A painted column and lighting installation created by the nonprofit Splashes of Hope

Providers won’t only treat cancer patients at the center. They also will see children with hemophilia and gastrointestinal conditions requiring infusion services. In the future they also will see rheumatology and Niemann-Pick type C clinical trial patients.

“By moving the center from our Muhlenberg campus to the Cedar Crest campus we’re consolidating care,” says Hagstrom, Chair of Pediatrics at LVHN and Lehigh Valley Children’s Hospital. “Now the cancer center is near surgeons, radiologists and imaging services, radiation oncologists, the inpatient unit and our children’s ER. Children and their families have easier access to all these things, and the people taking care of them have easier access to each other.”