Prompt and expert care is critical for a child with a burn injury– not only to help a child recover physically, but emotionally and socially as well. At the nationally acclaimed William Randolph Hearst Burn Center at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center, our team provides the highest level of medical care and has earned a reputation as one of the most compassionate burn centers in the world.
About Our Program
Founded in 1976 in collaboration with the New York Firefighters Burn Center, the William Randolph Hearst Burn Center at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell was created to provide specialized care to burn survivors of all ages. Our facility is designed to provide integrated specialty services during the three phases of burn injury recovery: burn shock, wound care or surgery, and rehabilitation and reconstruction.
Our Approach to Care
We recognize that every child with a burn injury has a unique set of symptoms, circumstances and needs. We take a holistic approach to care that considers the entire patient, including her physical, emotional and social factors. We strive to partner with patients and families in shared decision-making, empowering them with knowledge, support, and the most effective treatment options to achieve the best possible outcome for every child.
A multidisciplinary team of experts
Caring for young burn patients requires the collaboration of specialists who maximize every aspect of your child’s care. Our multidisciplinary team of burn specialists, plastic and reconstructive surgeons, psychologists, critical care medicine specialists, nurses, physical therapists, occupational therapists, social workers, and other specialty staff work together to address the physical and emotional needs of our patients and families. Coordinating with other clinical departments throughout NewYork-Presbyterian, our team assembles a customized plan to support your child on their journey toward recovery.
Empowering parents and caregivers
Having a critically ill child in the hospital can be an overwhelming and isolating experience for you and your child. Our team is here for you through every phase of care. We work closely with you to ensure that you and your child always feel supported and empowered with the most current information on treatment options, guidance, and support that will enable you to make the best decisions for your child’s health and well-being.
As a caregiver, you can help shape your child's personalized treatment program based on your child's physical, emotional, and practical needs. Your input is critical for making final decisions regarding your child's care and our multidisciplinary team is here to work alongside you and your family to achieve the greatest possible outcomes for your child.
Treatments we offer
While many burns can heal on their own, more severe burn injuries may require surgery and other interventions to promote healing. The specialists at the William Randolph Hearst Burn Center work together during the most critical stages of the injury to ensure optimal recovery for each patient. Treatments needed to effectively treat burn injuries vary from patient to patient, but may include the following:
Surgical care - Surgery may be necessary to remove dead skin, graft new skin, and reconstruct the burned area. Large burns or burns to critical body areas often require inpatient treatment. However, smaller wounds can be treated on an outpatient basis.
For patients with significant scarring, plastic and reconstructive surgery is available. Reconstructive burn surgery aims to improve function and the appearance of scars. Both surgical and non-operative treatments to repair scar tissue are available.
Intensivist services - The intensive care team at the William Randolph Hearst Burn Center uses special monitoring equipment to carefully observe the health of burn patients. Our board-certified critical care medicine doctors and nurses are specially trained in managing the overall care of these patients.
Nutritional counseling - A registered dietitian (RD) specializes in the nutritional care of our burn patients and visits with each patient admitted under our care. During the post-burn period, the nutrition needs of the burn patient increase dramatically to aid in healing. The RD evaluates and assesses each patient to determine the most appropriate nutrition plan to provide a high calorie, high protein diet. Education is provided to every patient prior to discharge to ensure they continue to meet these needs after the hospital.
Physical and occupational therapy - Rehabilitation is an essential piece of recovery. Working with physiatrists (rehabilitation medicine physicians), burn survivors undergo intensive physical and occupational therapy to regain strength and mobility.
Hyperbaric oxygen (HBO)therapy - NewYork-Presbyterian offers hyperbaric oxygen (HBO) therapy, a noninvasive treatment in which the patient is entirely enclosed in a pressure chamber filled with oxygen at a pressure greater than one atmosphere. The combination of high pressure and pure oxygen increases the concentration of oxygen in bloodstream to help promote healing.
Hydrotherapy - The William Randolph Hearst Burn Center features a state-of-the-art hydrotherapy treatment room. Hydrotherapy is used to wash away dead skin and bacteria from burns, which minimizes the risk of infection.
Psychological services - At NewYork-Presbyterian, pediatric psychiatrists and psychologists offer psychological counseling to burn survivors and their families. Our treatment team includes specialists in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), pain, depression, and sleep disorder.
Services for children and families
At NewYork-Presbyterian, we offer a wide range of services to children and their families, including:
- Child life specialists to help children and families cope with hospitalization and illness and to provide distraction and support during procedures
- Therapeutic, emotional, educational, and recreational care for young patients and their family members in the Firefighter Jeff Giordano Children's Playroom
- Camp Phoenix, which is run by students at Weill Cornell Medicine and provides local, safe, fun activities to children aged 7 to 17 years who have been affected by a burn injury
- Arthur C. Luf Children's Burn Camp, a regional sleep-away camp for children aged 8 to 18 years who have survived serious burn injuries
- A special program to help children return to school after treatment for burns
- Burn prevention education
- A special support group for parents/caregivers of children who have suffered a burn injury and are hospitalized at the Burn Center
Why Choose Us
Since its inception in 1976, the William Randolph Hearst Burn Center has become a leader in its field with innovative burn research programs, community outreach and education initiatives, and advanced clinical care. Today, the Center is one of the largest in the country, treating more than 500 inpatients and 4,000 outpatients each year — one-third of whom are children — from emergency response through treatment and rehabilitation.