Parents will likely need to take their children to the hospital at least once in their lives. Thankfully, there is now a place that provides comprehensive hospital care in a setting designed to put children and families at ease.
In January 2022, Overlook Medical Center, part of Atlantic Health System, opened the Hersh Children’s Center, a newly built facility that centralizes the hospital’s pediatric emergency and inpatient services in one convenient, family-friendly space.
“We are honored to at last be able to provide our young patients and their families with the highest quality of care in a space designed specifically for them,” said Stephanie Schwartz, president of Overlook Medical Center. “This state-of-the-art facility gives us a home for the future of pediatric care at Overlook–one that truly compliments the experienced care team and advanced technology that serve our patients.”
The 12,000-square-foot center brings together the Meri and Sol Barer Inpatient Pediatric Center (formerly housed on Overlook’s sixth floor) and the Michael Gordon Reeves Pediatric Emergency Department, for better-coordinated care of patients, ages 0-21.
Innovative Pediatric Care
“This combined and innovative approach to pediatric care is one of only a few of its kind in the northern NJ region,” said Walter Rosenfeld, MD, Chair of Pediatrics at Overlook Medical Center and Medical Director of Children’s Health for Atlantic Health System. “By bringing emergency and inpatient pediatric services together we can dramatically reduce the time between an emergency department visit to an inpatient room for children requiring hospitalization. It will also improve continuity of care by having clinical teams caring for patients from the moment they enter, through every stage of their experience.”
The new pediatric emergency department is equipped to handle the full range of pediatric conditions, with streamlined care to ease stress on the family. The new inpatient unit offers comforting special touches like sleep accommodations for parents, family lounges and a play area with skylights and plentiful windows.
The new center also includes:
• Nine inpatient private rooms, including two isolation rooms and Liam’s Room for patients with serious chronic conditions or life-limiting illnesses
• Eight private emergency department rooms staffed by pediatric emergency physicians, pediatric subspecialists and pediatric nurses
• One flexible room for emergency department patients or inpatients
• In-room accommodations for parents to stay the night with their children
• Numerous structural and design elements to enhance safety, comfort and security for patients and families
The Hersh Children’s Center is seamlessly connected to 100 pediatric specialists who provide advanced expertise, both at Overlook and throughout Atlantic Health System. Care at the Hersh Children’s Center is also connected to Goryeb Children’s Hospital in Morristown.
In the midst of the pandemic, hospital construction officials re-engineered ventilation systems, giving the facility the ability to utilize outdoor air for full circulation throughout the Hersh Children’s Center.
Experienced and Compassionate Clinicians
Pamela F. Love, MD, MHS, FAAP, board-certified in pediatrics and pediatric emergency medicine by the American Board of Pediatrics, will lead care at the Michael Gordon Reeves Pediatric Emergency Department.
“The serene yet cheerful and kid-friendly Hersh Children’s Center offers state-of-the-art care in a state-of-the-art facility and is staffed by dedicated pediatric providers and specialists,” said Dr. Love.
Eberechi Nwaobasi-Iwuh, MD, FAAP, chief of the pediatric hospitalist medicine service at Overlook and Goryeb Children’s Hospital, is board-certified in pediatrics and pediatric infectious diseases by the American Board of Pediatrics and will lead the team providing care at the Hersh Center’s Meri and Sol Barer Inpatient Pediatric Center.
“The biggest and best change with the Hersh Children’s Center is that now both the emergency department and inpatient unit are functioning in a more cohesive manner, which will provide a seamless transition of care for a child who comes into the pediatric emergency room and must be admitted,” Dr. Nwaobasi-Iwuh said.
Visit atlantichealth.org/overlookkids for more information.