Outpatient Perinatal/Pediatric Cardiology Outpatient Nurse Coordinator: Ashley Wann, RN
Whether your child has just been discharged from the hospital following heart surgery, or you are coming to UCLA for an initial consultation, our team of outpatient nurses will assist you and the cardiologists as we all work together to provide the best care for your child.
Our pediatric cardiology clinic is located in the Witherbee Foundation Children's Health Center located at UCLA Medical Plaza. When you arrive, you will register at the front desk and be directed to the cardiology module, where you will be greeted by one of our clinic nurses. The nurse will take your child's vital signs and measure height and weight, and then they will escort you to one of our patient rooms. These nurses are able to answer questions, assist with school or work notes for missing the day of the appointment, and perform an ECG (or Electrocardiograph, which is a non-invasive test that shows the electrical rhythm of the heart) at the cardiologist's request.
Our pediatric cardiology nurses are an important part of our cardiology team, and have many years of experience in caring for children with complex cardiology needs. They are available during clinic to answer questions, complete patient assessments including monitoring of growth and nutrition, help coordinate care, and provide education related to diagnosis, medications, procedures, and well-child care. They are also able to connect you with other clinical staff and resources as needed, such as a dietitian, social worker, pediatric cardiology support group, or information on local and state programs, such as Medi-Cal and California Children's Services.
Between clinic visits, the nurses are also available by phone and email to answer questions, help resolve difficult situations (such as problems getting medication from the pharmacy), and act as a liaison to enhance your communication with the cardiology team.
Our inpatient nursing staff serves a vital role in the care of your child. Treatment plans can be complex and involve a variety of team members Nursing roles include patient assessment, education before/after surgical procedures, post-operative care, discharge instructions and transitioning to outpatient nursing. Our inpatient nurses are available to families throughout the hospitalization to answer questions, offer advice and provide state-of-the-art and compassionate care.
Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU): your newborn will be cared for in the neonatal intensive care unit immediately after birth by a team of nurses that are trained to care for neonates. Your baby will be cared for here prior to surgery as well as after the immediate post-operative period as needed through discharge.
Pediatric Cardiothoracic Intensive Care Unit (PCTICU): Dedicated and designed specifically to care for children after cardiothoracic surgery. Nurses in this unit are experienced pediatric intensive care nurses that have undergone additional classes and training to care for children with congenital heart defects and open heart surgery. Immediately after surgery your child will be admitted to this unit for care and stabilization until recovered from the immediate post-operative period. Patients may be discharged directly from this unit.
Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU): Dedicated and designed to care exclusively for children who require higher acuity nursing outside of the immediate post-operative period. Your child may be transferred here 2-3 days after surgery to continue his recovery.
Cardiothoracic Surgery Nurse Practitioners: Cardiothoracic Pediatric Nurse Practitioners will be the first medical professionals you and your family members will meet from the surgical team. They provide continuity from the first meeting with the surgeon at the surgical consultation to the post-operative appointment after your child has been discharged home. The cardiothoracic pediatric nurse practitioners work closely with families and the remainder of the health care team to assure that your child receives the best care possible. In addition to providing continuity of care between inpatient and outpatient settings, our nurse practitioners participate in educating families and staff about heart conditions, ordering diagnostic tests, managing medications, keeping your family, your child and the referring physician informed of any test results or changes in management or plan. The nurse practitioners visit your child daily while he/she is in the hospital.