Pediatric Oncology and Hematology Care at the Village
Cancer strikes in hundreds of different forms. Randomly choosing, the disease spares no ethnicity, age group, socioeconomic class or geographic region. Yet for anyone, cancer treatment comes down to the same objective – effective treatment provided promptly and compassionately.
At the Village within the Van Elslander Cancer Center, the St. John Hospital and Medical Center Pediatric Hematology and Oncology team is dedicated to providing patients with the most advanced care in a supportive and compassionate environment. Our experienced physician team includes specialists in pediatrics, orthopedics, surgery, pathology, radiology, and radiotherapy. These physicians work side by side with psychologists, nurses, child life specialists and social workers that have special expertise in caring for children and adolescents with cancer.
A Place For Healing
Looking through the eyes of a child, the Village was developed. A specialty outpatient center for Pediatric Cancer, this area has been designed as a cityscape. The colors and art provide a hopeful atmosphere that feels like a friendly town – not a clinical treatment center. The children we care for are keenly aware of the challenge they are facing in their battle against cancer.
Our physician offices and treatment areas are created to provide as warm and comfortable a setting as possible. Children requiring inpatient care will be treated on the Pediatric unit of St. John Hospital. Recently renovated, our inpatient unit also provides a warm, kid-friendly environment.
At the Village, we offer treatment for the following:
- Bleeding Disorders
- Sickle cell anemia
- Platelet disorders
- White cell disorders
- Anemias of childhood
- Childhood leukemia and lymphoma
- Brain tumors
- Kidney tumors
- Other pediatric cancers of any type
Discovery leads to recovery
In children’s cancer, research is continually being conducted and has been critical to the phenomenal advances that have been made in survival rates. To gain access to the latest research, our physicians participate in Children’s Oncology Group (COG), an international research organization of healthcare professionals devoted to the study and treatment of pediatric malignancies. That means we can provide cutting edge treatment protocols for all forms of childhood cancer – even the most rare. St. John Hospital has been a member of COG for more than 20 years.
Care without pain
Managing pain for children with cancer and related conditions is a vital standard at the Village and St. John Hospital. We believe that treatment should be as pain-free as possible. We know that it is easier to remain positive and strong when you aren’t hurting. This is especially true for children. Our services include some of the more traditional forms of pain relief including:
- Conscious and deep sedation for painful procedures
- Patient controlled analgesia – self-administered pain medication
- Epidural anesthesia
We also provide a variety of nonpharmacological pain relief methods such as relaxation, guided imagery, as well as diversional activities like reading or play.
A network of support
Support is an important step in the healing process for both children with cancer and their parents. At the Van Elslander Center, we introduce families to other families whose child has had a similar disease. This kind of peer support can be critical for children, siblings and parents who may feel that nobody else knows what they are experiencing. These relationships can also provide kids and their parents a very real perspective about what to expect.
Our staff psychologists and social workers are also available to counsel and support our patients and their families.
- Remarkable progress has been made in survival and curability among adults and children with cancer
Addressing the needs of adolescents and young adults with cancer
Adolescents and young adults with cancer have a particular set of needs that differ somewhat from those of children and older adults. For people aged 15 - 30, the breakdown of cancer diagnoses also varies from that of other people with cancer.
Recognizing these differences, the clinical team at St. John Hospital developed a new program to address the unique challenges of adolescents and young adults with cancer.
As a partnership between St. John Hospital’s medical and pediatric oncology departments, the Adolescent and young Adult (AYA) Oncology program was developed to customize care, conduct research, and offer support and education tailored to the specific needs of adolescents and young adults with cancer.
The program is designed around:
- Excellent multidisciplinary clinical care.
- Programs that meet the unique psychosocial needs of people aged 15 to 30.
- Advances in the scientific understanding of cancer in this age group.
The AYA program offers:
- Expert medical, pediatric and gynecological oncology treatment for AYA cancers.
- Assessment of the patients’ medical, educational and psychosocial needs and referrals to appropriate services and advocates.
- Comprehensive care that addresses issues such as fertility, dating and intimacy, insurance, vocational training, schooling, and parental involvement.
- The chance to enroll in clinical trials specific to cancer type and age group.
- A body-mind-spirit approach to healing that provides care in outpatient and inpatient settings that are comfortable and appropriate for our patients.