ECMO team jumping for joy

Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital has been recognized as a recipient of the Gold Level ELSO Award for Excellence in Life Support from the Extracorporeal Life Support Organization for 2021.

The Excellence in Life Support Award recognizes those centers that demonstrate an exceptional commitment to evidence-based processes, quality measures, staff training, continuing education, patient satisfaction, and ongoing clinical care.

“For the past 26 years, Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital has used ECMO to support the critically ill children of our community,” said Crystal Akers, BSN, RN, ECMO coordinator for Children’s Hospital. “Upon becoming coordinator, my number one goal was to bring attention and legacy to the excellent, compassionate care that our hospital’s ECMO team has continued to provide throughout the years. I am beyond excited that ELSO has granted us this award. I truly believe it represents our dedication and hard work that we provide to each child.”

Children’s Hospital was selected as a Center of Excellence for demonstrating extraordinary achievement in the following three categories:

  • Excellence in promoting the mission, activities, and vision of ELSO;
  • Excellence in patient care by using the highest quality measures, processes, and structures based upon evidence; and
  • Excellence in training, education, collaboration, and communication supporting ELSO guidelines that contributes to a healing environment for families, patients, and staff.

Children’s Hospital provides Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation or ECMO for support of failing organ systems in patients, including infants and children. ECMO is one of the most advanced forms of life support available to patients experiencing acute failure of the cardio-respiratory system. ECMO allows time for the patient’s lungs or heart to heal over a period of time by using a heart-lung machine to oxygenate the blood outside the body.

ECMO and the team at Children’s Hospital have saved hundreds of critically ill children — patients like Lexi Anderson, who at 15 was diagnosed with a rare heart condition that required a transplant. After going into cardiac arrest twice, Lexi was placed on ECMO at Children’s Hospital, which kept her alive until she received a new heart.

Visit our website to learn more about ECMO at Children’s Hospital.