If an illness or injury results in your child being in an unstable critical condition, a hospital-based pediatric critical care specialist can be called on to provide the specialized care your child needs. Some conditions that may cause your child to be unstable and critical include:

  • Severe asthma
  • Diabetic ketoacidosis
  • An overwhelming infection, such as severe pneumonia
  • Serious injuries from accidents (such as cars, bicycles, scooters, etc.)
  • Poisoning
  • Near-drowning

Children who are critically ill require careful monitoring in a pediatric intensive care unit (PICU). Pediatric critical care specialists like those at Marshall Health coordinate the care of these children, which is then provided by a team of doctors, nurses and other health care specialists. They use the special medicines or treatments that can only be offered in the PICU. Marshall Health partners with Hoops Family Children’s Hospital at Cabell Huntington Hospital to deliver critical care services from infant to age 21.

As a hospital with one of only three PICUs in West Virginia, Hoops Family Children’s Hospital offers specialized pediatric transport services, and the team transports an average of 450 critically ill or injured infants and children each year.

Our fellowship-trained pediatric critical care specialists generally provide the following care to children who are critically ill:

  • Diagnosis of children who have an unstable, life-threatening condition
  • Thorough monitoring, medication, and treatment of children in a PICU
  • Supervision of children on respirators
  • Medical treatment for children with severe heart and lung disease
  • Placement of special catheters in the blood vessels and heart
  • Management of medications and treatments for children with brain trauma 

The critical care team in the PICU specializes in stabilizing critically ill children after surgery or serious injury and illness so they can begin to heal. Once their condition is stable, our patients return to the care of their primary care physician.