Best Children's Hospitals: Diabetes

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John's Hopkins Children's Center

Johns Hopkins is a leader in juvenile diabetes research. Credit: John's Hopkins Children's Center

When your child is ill, only the best care is good enough. So we're highlighting the hospitals that are leading the way in research, innovation, treatment and, most importantly, patient care. This is the fourth in the series on best children's hospitals in the United States.

Some 151,000 people under the age of 20 have been diagnosed with diabetes. Faced with the rise of both type 1 and type 2 diabetes in children and the emerging epidemic of childhood obesity, America's top children's hospitals are ramping up their research and treatment options for diabetes and endocrine disorders.

Here are three leaders:
Johns Hopkins Children's Center, Baltimore, Md.
Johns Hopkins is blazing a trail on the forefront of diabetes and obesity research. The hospital was named No. 3 in the U.S. News & World Report study of leading children's diabetes hospitals. Working as part of the team of researchers for the Baltimore Diabetes Research and Training Center (DRTC), the Johns Hopkins team recently zeroed in on what could be a promising new drug therapy for the disease. The $7.4 million training center is funded by the National Institutes of Health, and unites Johns Hopkins researchers with a team of 140 researchers from the University of Maryland School of Medicine and the Bloomberg School of Public Health to conduct community-level research on diabetes and obesity in children and adults.
"The incidence of type 2 diabetes has risen dramatically in children, meaning younger and younger adults are suffering from diabetes-related complications such as blindness and kidney failure," says Fredric Wondisford, M.D., Chief of the Division of Metabolism and Director of the DRTC. Research focus groups explore everything from cell biology and immunology to obesity receptors and the prevention and control of diabetes and obesity.

Wanda King, whose daughter was diagnosed with pediatric diabetes at 13, attributes the center's diabetes management program to the ongoing health of her child: "They restored to me the idea that Katie could have the best life possible."

UCSF Children's Hospital at the University of California (UCSF), San Francisco Medical Center
, San Francisco, Calif.
The pediatric diabetes program at UCSF is based on a team approach and is led by more than 150 experts, including patient educators, social workers and dietitians. The team prides itself on its "compassionate care on the healing edge of scientific discovery" and works closely with families through inpatient and outpatient treatment of diabetes. UCSF is ranked No. 6 in children's hospitals that treat diabetes by U.S. News, and patients are encouraged to become part of the research and participate in studies. Plans are underway for a state-of-the-art children's hospital to open in 2014 at the hospital's Mission Bay site.

New York-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley-Komansky Children's Hospital (at New York-Presbyterian University Hospital of Columbia and Cornell), New York, N.Y.
The hospital has been lauded by NACHRI for its CHALK (Choosing Healthy & Active Lifestyles for Kids) program, which champions the prevention of childhood obesity in the community. In addition, the children's hospital is ranked No. 7 in the U.S. News report on children's diabetes hospitals, and as one of the top 10 children's hospitals in the nation.

Morgan Stanley-Komansky's endocrinology, diabetes and metabolism program is part of a citywide and international referral site for children who have diabetes and/or adrenal and endocrine problems and is closely related to the Naomi Berrie Diabetes Center at New York-Presbyterian Hospital and the Columbia University Medical Center. Doctors at the hospital treat more than 6,000 children annually, focusing on prevention as well as treatment. Children's Hospital has been cited by the American Diabetes Association for its multidisciplinary family-centered services, including home and school visits, an insulin pump program and education programs for grandparents and other caregivers.

Related: Best Children's Hospitals: Top 3, Best Children's Hospitals: Cancer, Best Children's Hospitals: Digestive and Liver Disorders

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