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Neonatology Infant Tracheostomy and Home Ventilator Program

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Linda Gratny, MD, leads the infant tracheostomy and home ventilator program at Children's Mercy

Infant Tracheostomy Care

The Infant Tracheostomy and Home Ventilator Program is a full-service program that provides individualized care in the home setting. Babies with chronic respiratory failure who need prolonged ventilator assistance have the opportunity to live at home rather than in an intensive care hospital environment.

Tracheostomy Care at Home

Our team includes neonatologists, otolaryngolgist, registered nurse coordinators, social workers, and dietitians. The team works closely with other pediatric subspecialists, including cardiologists, pulmonologists, neurologists, developmental pediatricians and speech, occupational and physical therapists. 

Program Services

The majority of our patients have what is considered to be a reversible disease. Once an infant is accepted into the program, infants are discharged to home from either the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit or the Pediatric Intensive Care Nursery. Family preparation includes extensive training practice sessions with the equipment.

Program Highlights

  • Our program is one of the largest in the U.S., with more than 25 new patients treated each year. 
  • The program enables the child and family to have as much normalcy as possible while still receiving complex medical care.
  • Neonatal physicians oversee the home ventilator clinic, providing care while patients are in the hospital and after they transition to home.
  • A physician member of the team is available to families by phone 24 hours a day for questions or problems.
  • Our team provides guidance and treatment options for patients who may need long-term ventilator support.

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