Skip to main content Skip to navigation
We care about your privacy. Read about your rights and how we protect your data. Get Details

New Children's National Fetal Medicine Institute Offers Advanced Diagnostics and Patient Care

May 13, 2014
Research Du Plessis

Washington, DC— For expectant parents, waiting for news about the health of their unborn children can be extremely stressful. During a ribbon-cutting ceremony yesterday afternoon, the Children’s National Health System opened the Fetal Medicine Institute to provide these parents with advanced fetal and newborn care and cutting-edge diagnostics.

“We feel that the main challenge for fetal medicine, in general, remains diagnostic. Being able to detect a fetus that is not thriving is still difficult. Our long-term goal is to intervene before fetuses become harmed by an adverse intrauterine environment,” says Adré J. du Plessis, MBChB, MPH, Division Chief of Fetal and Transitional Medicine and Director of the Fetal Medicine Institute at Children’s National.

The new 3,400 square foot space is centrally located on the third floor of the Sheikh Zayed Campus for Advanced Children’s Medicine in Washington, DC.

“We’ve designed the Fetal Medicine Institute such that clinicians, researchers, and academics are all working in close proximity with each other,” says Dr. du Plessis. “One of the cornerstones of our program is that we strive to maintain a very short pipeline between our research and clinical activities, and in so doing, minimize unnecessary delays between our diagnostic advances in the laboratories, and the benefit they might have for babies.”

The Institute uses advanced fetal imaging, telecommunications and video conferencing, and state-of-the-art consultation rooms for families. With a strong emphasis on telemedicine, the Institute can easily include referring physicians in patient consults with its fetal team.  

The fetal team at Children’s National consists of more than 50 specialists from 16 medical disciplines. This breadth of medical expertise at Children’s National ensures that the prenatal and postnatal care provided for a range of conditions is comprehensive and tailored to the patient.  In fact, Children’s National is one of the few hospitals worldwide with a fetal neuroradiology team that uses advanced diagnostic imaging to care for the developing fetal brain. Annually, the fetal team evaluates almost 600 fetal ultrasounds, more than 500 fetal MRIs (magnetic resonance imaging), and 2,500 fetal echocardiograms.

Contact: Emily Hartman or Caitlyn Camacho at 202-476-4500.

About Children's National Health System

Children’s National Health System, based in Washington, D.C., has served the nation’s children since 1870. Children’s National is one of the nation’s Top 5 pediatric hospitals and, for a second straight year, is ranked No. 1 in newborn care, as well as ranked in all specialties evaluated by U.S. News & World Report. It has been designated two times as a Magnet® hospital, a designation given to hospitals that demonstrate the highest standards of nursing and patient care delivery. This pediatric academic health system offers expert care through a convenient, community-based primary care network and specialty outpatient centers in the D.C. Metropolitan area, including the Maryland suburbs and Northern Virginia. Home to the Children’s Research Institute and the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation, Children’s National is the seventh-highest NIH-funded pediatric institution in the nation. Children’s National is recognized for its expertise and innovation in pediatric care and as a strong voice for children through advocacy at the local, regional and national levels. 

For more information, follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Latest Tweets