CHEO to open state-of-the-art ‘IR Cath and Sim’ Lab
October 19, 2022
OTTAWA – CHEO, the pediatric health and research centre in Canada’s capital, is now home to world-class technology that will enhance safety and improve access to diagnostic procedures and treatment for young patients. The ‘IR Cath and Sim’ Lab is where CHEO experts perform interventional radiology, catheterizations, and simulations. Not only will newly installed equipment mean better, faster experiences for some of CHEO’s sickest patients, it will give medical learners a risk-free training environment.
“CHEO’s existing IR Cath Lab has served us well for nearly 15 years, but it is aging and the equipment has become less reliable,” says Dr. Jane Lougheed (pictured), CHEO’s chief of cardiology. “As repairs become more frequent, we have to send some very seriously ill young patients elsewhere, and that is never something we want to do.”
“The impact of this new simulation facility will be felt broadly by healthcare providers and the patients they care for,” explains Dr. Anna-Theresa Lobos, CHEO’s Simulation medical director. “This new facility allows healthcare professionals from all disciplines to master skills through simulation-based learning. It will enhance and advance pediatric healthcare and patient safety.”
“Anyone who has tried ordering large items online can likely sympathize with some of the COVID-era supply chain issues that have turned this project into a nearly 32-month undertaking,” says Caroline Boileau, project manager. “We worked through the issues, and patients and families will be the big winners – which was the goal all along.”
The lab redevelopment was made possible by philanthropy – including a $2 million corporate donation from CP in 2017. When the CP Women’s Open came to the capital city, so too did tremendous support for cardiology care at CHEO, thanks to the CP Has Heart program.
“CP is proud to continue making a difference in communities across Canada through CP Has Heart,” said Keith Creel, CP president and CEO. “We congratulate CHEO on the opening of the new lab, and on the important work being done by its world-class team in facilities like the IR Cath and Sim Lab.”
Newly installed equipment will allow CHEO to perform three times the number of procedures it can now, while also improving access and safety.
“We know that investing in kids’ health today is good for the individual patient and good for the entire health system over the long term,” says Alex Munter, CHEO’s president and CEO. “This investment will help an entire generation of patients live their best lives and that is definitely something to celebrate.”
CHEO patients like Dahlia Belfer know all too well how life-enhancing this equipment can be.
“When someone has a chronic illness that needs consistent intervention, hospitals become simultaneously a second home and a terrifying space,” Belfer says. “The staff do their best to make it comfortable, but a new space like this one can potentially take away a huge amount of pain and fear associated with interventions that exist to keep you alive.”
Belfer adds, “You shouldn’t fear what keeps you healthy, and having technology that makes these procedures easier and less painful can make a huge difference.”
“It’s so rewarding to see how much our community cares about our children and their well-being,” says Steve Read, president and CEO of the CHEO Foundation, which facilitated the CP donation. “This donor-driven investment is a big win, not only for patients and families, but also for the clinicians who provide the care. Thanks to our community of donors and the matching provided by CP, we have taken a big step forward for our cardiology kids.”
Dedicated to the best life for every child and youth, CHEO is a global leader in pediatric healthcare and research. Based in Ottawa, CHEO includes a hospital, children’s treatment centre, school and research institute, with satellite services located throughout Eastern Ontario. CHEO provides excellence in complex pediatric care, research and education. We are committed to partnering with families and the community to provide exceptional care – where, when and how it’s needed. CHEO is a partner of the Kids Come First Health Team, a network of partners in Eastern Ontario working to create a high quality, standardized and coordinated system for pediatric healthcare that is centred around children, youth and their families. Every year, CHEO helps more than 500,000 children and youth from Eastern Ontario, western Quebec, Nunavut and Northern Ontario.