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Programs & Services

Therapy for Feeding Disorders, Dysphagia

At Blythedale Children’s Hospital, evaluation and treatment of acquired and congenital feeding disorders in infants, children and adolescents are addressed by a team of pediatric specialists. This team, comprised of a pediatrician, speech and occupational therapist, registered dietitian, psychologist, nurses, neurologists, and other clinical specialists, works collaboratively with each child and family. Blythedale is the only specialty children’s hospital in New York State with the capability of combining these areas of expertise in a multidisciplinary team.

Children admitted to Blythedale for nutritional support and feeding therapy have wide ranging medical problems, including genetic and/or developmental disorders, complications due to premature birth, short-gut syndrome, brain injury, cerebral palsy, oral-motor dysfunction, post-surgical, and seizure disorders. Blythedale’s multidisciplinary approach not only incorporates each child’s complex medical and developmental needs, but also addresses behavioral and oral-motor feeding issues, in order to customize a nutritional plan to maximize growth and development.

Well-known for its superior outcomes and the ability to help patients achieve their maximum potential and meet their treatment objectives, Blythedale’s approach to treating children with complex medical problems is widely recognized as a national model of excellence.

Additional advantages to patients and families:

  • Board Certified Pediatricians 24/7 and experienced nursing staff (75% R.N., and more than 85% on the Infant and Toddler Unit).
  • Largest hospital-based pediatric therapy department in New York State, with 85 full-time pediatric therapists.
  • Therapeutic feeders (49 specially trained speech and occupational therapists) are assigned to each patient, based on the child’s individual needs and the therapist’s unique area of expertise.
  • Registered dietitian provides casespecific, individualized nutritional plan for every patient upon admission.
  • TPN (Total Parenteral Nutrition) management, weaning and training expertise.
  • Extensive experience in enteral feeding, weaning infants and children from supplemental tube feeding (naso-gastric, gastrostomy, and jejunostomy), and decreasing dependence on tube feedings.
  • 24/7 pulmonary and respiratory support for ventilator dependent children with immature feeding mechanisms.
  • Specialized services for children who have behavioral issues which interfere with diet advancement.
  • Six full-time registered pharmacists, including a Board Certified Clinical Pharmacist.
  • Frequent and comprehensive communication with referring institutions and physicians.
  • Excellence in caregiver education and comprehensive discharge planning services.
  • On-site public school district (the only one of its kind in New York).

On-Site Services and Support Areas Serving Patients with Feeding Therapy Needs:

  • Pediatric Medicine
  • Pediatric Nursing
  • Pediatric Nutrition
  • Pediatric Pulmonology
  • Pediatric RehabilitationMedicine
  • Pediatric Neurology
  • Pediatric Psychiatry and Psychology
  • Pediatric Speech Pathology providing therapeutic feeding, evaluations and interventions
  • Pediatric Occupational Therapy
  • Pharmacy

Additional Specialty Support Areas Available:
  • Pediatric Otolaryngology
  • Pediatric Gastroenterology
  • Additional consultative specialists as needed
  • Clinical Support Services
  • Audiology
  • Radiology
  • Lab Services
  • SocialWork/CaseManagement
  • Child Life Services
  • Patient Advocacy
Patient Stories
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Twins Kassius and Keaton were born in June, 2015, at just 30-weeks gestation
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