Cleveland Clinic Children’s U.S. News Rankings: Innovations, Patient Stories, Experts Available

For the 11th consecutive year, Cleveland Clinic Children’s is ranked among the nation’s top 50 hospitals.

As an integral part of Cleveland Clinic, which was ranked the nation’s No. 2 hospital in 2017 by U.S. News, Cleveland Clinic Children’s earned national recognition in 10 specialties.

Cleveland Clinic Children’s earns national recognition in 10 specialties from U.S. News & World Report. (Courtesy: Cleveland Clinic)

Cleveland Clinic has cared for infants, children, and adolescents since its doors first opened in 1921. That history of pediatric caregiving has blossomed into Cleveland Clinic Children’s, standing today as one of America’s leading and largest providers of comprehensive pediatric care. Now, it’s more than 300 pediatricians, practitioners and specialists – and more than 50 outpatient sites – provide the full spectrum of primary, specialty, and subspecialty care to the largest patient population of any children’s hospital in Northeast Ohio.

Innovations & Inspiring Patient Stories


Young Adult With Autism Makes Remarkable Transformation

Yoav’s progression from a toddler who could barely function, into a well-functioning young man with a bright future, is a testament to parental love and modern medicine. Veena Ahuja, MD treats Yoav and other adolescents using methods based on the science of applied behavioral analysis (ABA), a systematic application of behavioral interventions and instruction that has proven to be effective for children with autism.


Yoav Israeli with his parents, Tali and Aviad. (Courtesy: Bruce Zake for the Cleveland Clinic.)


After Eight-Month Hospital Stay, Amazing Grace Goes Home

Born with Down syndrome, two months early in October 2016, Grace has faced a lifetime’s worth of challenges from the start. Now, just 17 months old, Grace has also undergone treatments with Seth Rotz, M.D. for two separate cases of leukemia, including one instance where the leukemia was found in her spinal fluid –an extremely rare occurrence that added further rigor to her treatments. After eight months in the hospital, Grace and her family are finally home.

Cleveland Clinic Children's Grace Down syndrome

Grace and her brother Robert the day Grace got to go home. (Courtesy: Cleveland Clinic)

Cardiology & Heart Surgery

Boy Who Had Hole in His Heart Celebrates First Birthday

Just three days after Jeremiah’s was born on January 28, 2017, he was diagnosed with atrioventricular septal defect (AVSD), one of the most common congenital heart defects affecting children. Without surgery, only about one-third of children with AVSD live more than a year. Cleveland Clinic Children’s pediatric cardiologist Elizabeth Saarel, M.D. performed the delicate surgery to repair a hole in the lower chambers of his heart.

Jeremiah had open-heart surgery at Cleveland Clinic Children’s to repair a hole in the lower chambers of his heart. (Courtesy: Cleveland Clinic)

Gastroenterology & Hepatology

4-Year-Old Boy Meets Lifesaving Liver Donor from Halfway Around the World

Becky Cable is a 46-year-old woman, living in a small village in western New York. Ahmad Akkad is a 4-year-old boy, from Dubai, a city in the United Arab Emirates. And while their homes are about 7,000 miles apart, the two will be forever linked – because a palm-sized piece of Becky’s liver has saved Ahmad’s life through organ donation surgery. Ahmad and his mother, Aya, took a 22-hour flight from UAE to Cleveland where Koji Hashimoto, M.D., Ph.D. performed the surgery.

liver donor meets transplant recipient for first time

Aya was able to meet Becky in person and thank her for her generous gift that saved her son’s life. (Courtesy: Cleveland Clinic)


After 18 Months in NICU, baby celebrates second birthday at home

Crosby was in Cleveland Clinic Children’s NICU for 18 months, longer than any other patient. He was born 12 weeks premature with omphalocele, a rare birth defect of the abdominal wall in which the intestines, liver and other organs remain outside the abdomen. Ricardo Rodriguez, M.D. has overseen Crosby’s care since birth. He describes Crosby’s progress as inspirational for the entire staff. “Crosby touched the lives of everyone in the NICU, and taught us to never, ever give up.”

Cleveland Clinic Children's NICU

Crosby celebrates his 2nd birthday at home after 18 months in the NICU. (Courtesy: Cleveland Clinic)


Courageous Teen Vows to Keep Winning Battle with Rare Neurological Disorder

Cleveland Clinic Children’s doctors diagnosed 14-year-old Jack Sparent with Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) – a rare neurological disorder in which a person’s peripheral nerves are attacked (instead of protected) by the immune system. Its onset can be spectacularly swift, causing muscle weakness, a loss of reflexes, numbness or tingling in parts of the body, and even paralysis, according to Gary Hsich, M.D., a pediatric neurologist at Cleveland Clinic Children’s . Jack spent a number of weeks in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) on a ventilator, and then endured speech, physical, recreational and occupational therapy, where he fought to get back on his feet.

Jack Sparent Cleveland Clinic Children's Courage Award winner

Jack was determined to regain his life. After working countless hours, he’s walking again. (Courtesy: Jacque Sparent)

Achievements & Highlights

Cleveland Clinic Children’s First Free-Standing Outpatient Center

Artist’s rendering of Cleveland Clinic Children’s new Outpatient Center to open in the fall.

On September 24, Cleveland Clinic Children’s will fulfill a decades-long dream of moving most of its pediatric ambulatory services to a new facility on its main campus in downtown Cleveland. Cleveland Clinic Children’s new home will be housed in the former four-story Taussig Cancer Center situated along Euclid Avenue between 89th and 90th streets. The expansion, overseen by Rita Pappas, M.D., will unite both primary and specialty outpatient care in one convenient, coordinated environment better equipped to manage Cleveland Clinic Children’s 750,000+ patient visits. The 120,000-square-foot state-of-the-art structure – equipped with the latest technology and designed to provide the best possible outcomes in terms of safety, quality, patient satisfaction and value – will feature 50 exam rooms, 20 private infusion rooms, 4 procedure rooms, and hundreds of physicians, nurses, therapists and administrative staff working side-by-side to provide the most comprehensive and integrated medical, surgical, developmental and behavioral care.

Cleveland Clinic Children’s First in Northeast Ohio to Provide Families Live Webcam Access to their NICU Infants

Babies born prematurely can be hospitalized for weeks or even months, making it difficult for parents and family to always be by their sides. In an effort to make parents’ time away from their newborns a little less stressful, Cleveland Clinic Children’s is installing a new camera system in its Neonatal Intensive Care Units to give parents an on-demand, video-only view of their infants.

“Introducing this innovative technology in our NICUs has enhanced overall patient experience and satisfaction,” said Hany Aly, M.D. chair of Neonatology at Cleveland Clinic Children’s. “These cameras not only allow families to monitor their babies but it also gives them an opportunity to feel an emotional connection.”

High-Powered Imaging Solves Teen Seizure Mystery

By the time he was 18, Ravi Stewart was having as many as 80 epileptic seizures each day. He participated in on of the Cleveland Clinic Epilepsy Center’s breakthrough research programs. High-powered imaging tests confirmed the exact location of a brain lesion that was triggering the seizures. Jorge Alvaro Gonzalez-Martinez, M.D., Ph.D. performed Ravi’s operation. Now the seizures are gone.

 Strong evidence suggests integrative approaches to treating pain more effective than opioids

With opioid addiction a public health crisis, non-pharmacologic pain treatments are needed more than ever. Cleveland Clinic’s Center for Pediatric Integrative Medicine offers children a variety of alternative treatments for pain, such as acupuncture and frequency-specific microcurrent (FSM) therapy.

“At our center, we use opioids sparingly,” said Benjamin Katholi, M.D., physiatrist at Cleveland Clinic Children’s Hospital for Rehabilitation. “I often use acupuncture to treat juvenile arthritis and headaches. It is also effective in treating symptoms resulting from brain injuries. For children who are very sensitive to medication, acupuncture is a better modality without medication side effects.”