In this section
Inpatient tracheostomy services
Our nurse practitioner and nurse clinician meet with families prior to tracheostomy placement to begin teaching and to discuss life with a tracheostomy and/or home ventilator. This relationship and teaching continues throughout the initial hospital stay, subsequent hospitalizations and procedures.
Your child will receive care from multiple expertly trained physicians including pediatric pulmonologists, pediatric otolaryngologists, neonatologists, pediatric critical care specialists, and pediatric anesthesiologists.
- Pre-operative consultation and teaching with family
- Weekly care conference with family focusing on three criteria for discharge
- Medical stability
- Caregiver training completion and progress
- Identification of community resources
Expert care before and after surgery
Prior to tracheostomy placement, neonates are cared for in our neonatal intensive care unit and older children are cared for in our pediatric intensive care unit. When a neonate is ready to transition to a home ventilator, their care is transitioned to the pediatric intensive care unit. Bedside teaching begins with the first consultation by our advanced practice nurse and nurse clinician and continues in both the NICU and PICU. Families will have multiple opportunities to practice hands on care for their child that culminates in walks off the unit with all the equipment needed to go home and a period of independent care where caregivers have the opportunity to simulate a home experience with their own home equipment while still in the hospital.
Your child’s care is most important!
Since the time you learned that your child needs a tracheostomy, you have met many new people who will help you and new things about the care your child will need.
Family and trained caregivers
As you start thinking about and getting ready to take your child home, you are going to need the assistance of the trach team members. More importantly, you will need the support and help of family and others.
Your child must be attended, at all times, by an adult caregiver who is trained to do trach care and knows emergency trach care.
Many of the cares needed will require two persons to perform. You will need at least one other adult to be completely trained in your child’s care. This second caregiver will learn as much about your child’s care as you have.
The second caregiver is an important adult who will continue to be involved in your child’s life after discharge. This person will spend time with your child and be a resource and back up person for you if you need to be away from your child.
Before your child can go home, you and the second caregiver will need to learn and demonstrate the care that your child needs. Training includes learning about your child’s:
- Physical care
- Care of the tracheostomy
- Giving medications
- Equipment care
You will work closely with the nurses and therapists to learn your child’s daily care as described in this Care Notebook. You will learn to:
- Give breaths with the resuscitator bag
- Do trach care
- Change trach ties
- Change the trach tube
Once you have mastered these skills, you will learn about caring for, setting up and cleaning the respiratory equipment.
Before going home, you will also learn CPR.
Shortly before your child goes home, you will do “Independent Cares.”
Independent Cares is an exercise where you and the other trained caregiver(s) provide all the care your child will need at home, but it is done while still in the hospital. During Independent Cares, you spend 6 - 24 hours continuously caring for your child. You will use your child’s own home equipment and supplies. The purpose of Independent Cares is to simulate the home environment and to assure that you are prepared to provide all the care and manage all the equipment your child needs.
Our advanced practice nurse and nurse clinician meet with families prior to tracheostomy placement to begin teaching and discuss life with a tracheostomy and/or home ventilator with families. This relationship and teaching continues throughout the initial hospital stay, subsequent hospitalizations and procedures.