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Bear Essentials Online - December 2011

Articles in this issue

Children’s National Opens a New Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (CICU)

On December 13, Children’s opened a new 26-bed secure Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (CICU). The new unit has private patient rooms designed with input from the Children’s National Heart Institute (CNHI) families and the CICU staff.
On December 7, Children’s opened a new 26-bed secure Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (CICU)

The Children’s National Heart Institute team is comprised of experts recognized nationally and internationally in cardiac care. Specially trained nurse practitioners, genetic counselors, social workers, nutritionists, case managers, child life specialists, and pharmacists complement the core team.

Children’s National cares for some of the most complex cases in the world, and has one of the highest success rates for cardiac surgery in the nation. The Institute is one of only a few programs in the country with a specialized team of pediatric cardiac anesthesiologists who provide anesthesia and pain management for patients with congenital heart disease.

New features:
  • Open design that lends to increased visualization of team members in a large geographical space.
  • Patient monitor alarms are located at the bedside and ring directly to nurse phones.
  • Acoustic-backed flooring throughout the unit maintains overall sound below American Academy of pediatrics (AAP) recommended decibel level.
  • Family waiting area, with lactation room, consultation room, sibling consultation room, shower and changing room, laundry facilities, and a common refrigerator for food storage for parents.
  • Custom recliner chair and sleep sofa, which also locks into a set position for parents to sleep at the bedside.
Read a parent letter about the CICU.
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Radiology and Imaging Comes to Montgomery County

Children’s National has a new outpatient imaging facility located in the same building as our Montgomery County Regional Outpatient Center. Children’s National Imaging, owned by Children’s National Medical Center, offers a variety of imaging services including MRI, CT, Ultrasound, X-Ray, and Fluoroscopy. The radiology suite has a kid-friendly and fun atmosphere, with an adventure series theme to make imaging more inviting.
The new radiology suite has a kid-friendly and fun atmosphere.

Our technologists work with children and know how to reduce anxiety while obtaining high-quality images. This new facility has an on-site bilingual staff as well as a Child Life Specialist who is trained in the psychosocial development of children. Children’s offers sedated MRIs with sedation performed by fellowship-trained pediatric anesthesiologists.

Children’s National radiologists are board certified by the American Board of Radiology and are nationally and internationally recognized with added qualifications in pediatric, interventional, fetal, cardiac, and neurological radiology.

To request an appointment, call 888-884-BEAR (2327).

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Holiday Fire Safety
As you prepare for the holidays, take the following safety precautions.

Remember to check holiday lights for excessive wear and limit the number of strings connected to each electrical outlet.
  • If you buy a live tree, place away from heat sources. Heat dries the needles and makes them easier to catch fire.
  • Always keep your tree stand filled with water.
  • Only buy artificial trees if they are labeled “Fire Resistant” or “Flame Retardant.”
  • Check holiday lights each year for excessive wear. Replace if the wires are frayed or the sockets are cracked.
  • Connect strings of lights to an extension cord before plugging the cord into the outlet.
  • Do not link more than three strings of lights (unless the label notes it is safe to do so) so as not to overload electrical outlets.
  • Never put wrapping paper in a fireplace. It can result in a very large fire, throwing off dangerous sparks and embers that may result in a chimney fire.
  • Avoid using lit candles. If you do use them, be sure to use sturdy candle holders and place them out of the reach of children.
Holiday Entertaining
  • When cooking for guests, stay in the kitchen and keep an eye on the stove.
  • Cook with pots and pans on back burners to keep them out of toddlers’ reach.
  • Place hot liquids and foods in the center of the table.
  • Place space heaters at least 3 feet from anything that can catch fire, such as curtains.
  • Keep matches and lighters up high in a locked cabinet.
  • Establish a “Kid-Free Zone” around fireplaces, including gas fireplaces, and wood burning stoves. Glass fire screens can get very hot.
Visit SafeKids for additional fire tips.

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Help Dr. Bear Bring Cheer to Patients this Holiday

Rubik's cube
Dr. Bear’s Closet provides items to thousands of patients in Children’s play rooms, waiting rooms, inpatient units, ambulances, the Emergency Department, Outpatient Centers, and Health Centers. The closet also provides personal care items, clothing, blankets, and other items for out-of-town families with patients being treated at Children’s National.

If you choose to donate, please make sure your donations:
  • Are NEW (toys, stuffed animals, blankets, or clothes) to meet the hospital’s infection control requirements.
  • Meet consumer product safety codes – a toy’s package will say if it meets the codes.
  • Include only non-toxic materials (toys or craft kits with glue or markers) – the package will say if it is.
We CANNOT accept:
  • Spark-producing toys due to fire regulations.
  • Regular Play-Doh. All Play-Doh must be gluten-free.
  • Latex (or rubber) balloons and materials because of latex allergy precautions and other safety factors.
  • Toys made of glass or brittle plastic.
  • Items with violent, frightening, or adult-rated themes.
  • Toys that can break or have sharp edges – toys should be sturdy.
Please view our wish list for more donation ideas.

Learn more about Dr. Bear's Toy Closet.

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Spice up Your Party Platter

Edible Ornaments

Edible Ornaments
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Serves: 1 (1 serving per cracker)

  • Low-fat or fat free cream cheese
  • Water crackers (circle-shaped)
  • Colorful veggies (such as peas, diced peppers, carrot slices and celery stems)
  • Spread low-fat or fat free cream cheese on water crackers.
  • Top each with colorful veggies.

Cucumber Tree
Cucumber Tree

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Serves: 20 (1 serving per cucumber cup)

  • 6 medium cucumbers
  • 1 (8-ounce) container hummus
  • Chopped chives for garnish
  • 1 red pepper
  • Cut the cucumbers crosswise into 3/4-inch-thick rounds. Using a teaspoon, scoop out the seeds to form a well, about 1/3 inch deep, in each slice.
  • Spoon about 1/2 tablespoon of the hummus into the wells of the cucumber cups.
  • Cut the red pepper into small round pieces.
  • Arrange the cucumber cups on a plate in the shape of a Christmas tree.
  • Place pepper pieces onto random cucumber cups.
  • Sprinkle all with chopped chives.


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Parent's Letter Project

Parents of children who have been treated at Children’s National Medical Center can write letters of advice and support to families undergoing similar treatments.

Toy Safety Tips

In the dark about which toys are right for your child’s age and skill level? Use this handy pocket guide from SafeKids.

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