Johns Hopkins Children’s Center Expands Surgical Care in Washington, D.C. Area

Published in Surgery - Spring 2019

Surgeons with Johns Hopkins Children’s Center have extended their expertise to the greater Washington region to offer general surgeries and on-call coverage at Shady Grove Medical Center in Rockville, Maryland. The surgeons will also have patient clinics for post-operative care and new patient consultations at the nearby Johns Hopkins Health Care and Surgery Center in Bethesda, Maryland.

The collaboration with Shady Grove adds to similar relationships formed over the last two years between the Children’s Center’s Division of Pediatric Surgery and WellSpan York Hospital in Pennsylvania; Anne Arundel Medical Center in Annapolis; and Greater Baltimore Medical Center in Towson.

“We have developed an approach to providing pediatric surgery in the community, wherever that community is,” explains David Hackam, the Children’s Center’s surgeon-in-chief. “This arrangement brings extended pediatric surgical care closer to local communities, while facilitating access to the expertise of Johns Hopkins Children’s Center for those with the most severe and serious disorders. We are particularly excited to partner with Shady Grove, given their remarkable commitment to patient- and family-centered care, as well as the importance they place on quality, safety and value.”

The Children’s Center aims to reach as many children as possible, says Hackam. “To build our programs and reach more patients, we seek to go out into the communities where those patients are. Our goals are to become part of those medical communities, and to integrate ourselves within the fabric of the local hospital.”


Building Local Practices to Minimize Distant Transfers

At Shady Grove, Children’s Center surgeons provide general surgery procedures such as gallbladder removal, inguinal and umbilical hernia repair and appendectomy, as well as pediatric specialty care. They also provide 24/7 on-call coverage to the neonatal intensive care unit and emergency department.

“We see ourselves as very much a part of the local medical and surgical community,” says Hackam. “That means being embedded in that hospital and having a local clinic, in addition to taking emergency calls.”

Clint Cappiello, a Johns Hopkins Children’s Center surgeon who provides these services, says Shady Grove operating room staff and nurses have visited Johns Hopkins Children’s Center to see the facilities and better understand their process. The Children’s Center surgeons—including Cappiello, Hackam, Samuel Alaish, Daniel Rhee and Shaun Kunisaki—also have been meeting with operating room teams, physician assistants, pediatric hospitalists, emergency room physicians and nurses at Shady Grove to let them know about the service and cases they can handle.

The group also is looking to build an elective surgery practice “where families don’t have to go so far to get pediatric care for complex surgical issues,” says Cappiello. Through this service, the team could perform routine operations in the outpatient setting and facilitate care for children needing more specialized and team-based care.

More complicated cases involving certain congenital conditions or diagnoses requiring additional specialties (like gastroenterology, pathology or critical care) are currently being referred to Johns Hopkins Children’s Center in Baltimore, Cappiello says. “Ultimately, we are focused on building the practice locally, reserving transfers for only the sickest, most complex patients.”

To refer a patient, call 443-997-5437.