Houston now has a new state-of-the-art Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) located in The Woman’s Hospital of Texas Pediatric Center. Staffed 24 hours a day, the PICU is a 14-bed intensive care unit for critically ill infants, children and adolescents.

PICU Staff

Our highly skilled, dedicated medical team includes specially trained PICU physicians and nurses who provide compassionate care for children with serious or life-threatening illness. Expertly trained to quickly assess and treat your child to achieve the best possible outcome, our PICU team monitors your child’s condition on a minute-to-minute basis. Our medical staff communicates regularly with pediatric subspecialists, surgeons, primary care physicians and therapists to coordinate quality care for your child. Our team is dedicated to providing life-saving medical care in a nurturing environment.

The PICU is staffed by:

  • Board-certified pediatric intensivists
  • Nurses
  • Respiratory therapists
  • Child life specialists
  • Social workers
  • Dietitians
  • Pharmacists
  • Physical therapists
  • Occupational therapists
  • Speech therapists (also called speech language pathologists)

State-of-the-Art PICU Facility

Our facility provides advanced medical equipment with the latest technology for diagnosis and treatment of our patients. Each patient stays in a private room. Most also have a sofa bed should parents choose to stay with their child around the clock.

Still, a stay in the PICU can be frightening and confusing for both you and your child. Due to the constant monitoring of your child’s condition, there can be different wires, tubes and other medical devices attached to your child at any given moment. These devices often have blinking lights and make unusual sounds. Some have alarms that may sound to notify the PICU staff of changing medical situations. Equipment, as common as a blood pressure cuff, may operate intermittently without a health care professional being present, startling a patient. Knowing that all this can be extremely stressful, our PICU team will do whatever they can to assist you and your child during this difficult time.

We have board-certified pediatric intensivists on-staff to answer all of your questions and explain what is happening to your child. We also have a child life specialist available to provide coping strategies for the patient and family members. Rest assured we will provide your child with the best individualized, compassionate medical care available. Our mission in the PICU is to return your child to good health as quickly as possible.

Conditions We Treat

We care for children who need intensive medical or technologic intervention for a wide spectrum of serious medical conditions. Here are some of the more common conditions we treat:

  • Respiratory failure or obstruction
  • Airway disease including asthma
  • Pneumonia
  • Life-threatening entero-virus
  • Life-threatening influenza
  • Intubation
  • Level of consciousness
  • Multiorgan failure
  • Extreme seizure activity
  • Extensive surgery
  • Extensive postoperative monitoring
  • Severe infection
  • Post cardiopulmonary resuscitation
  • Shock
  • Severe diabetes
  • Diabetic complications
  • Near drowning victims
  • Extreme high blood pressure
  • Life-threatening bleeding
  • Sickle cell crisis
  • Poisoning
  • Drug overdose

PICU Admission

Most of our patients are transferred to our PICU from our emergency department (ER). Others arrive via ambulance or other emergency medical vehicles. REACH Air Medical Services can airlift your child directly to our facility via a fully equipped medical helicopter or ground ambulance. Manned with a dedicated pediatric transport team, this service quickly transports the most critical patients directly to our heliport for life-saving care.

PICU Discharge/Transfer

Most of our patients are transferred to our PICU from our emergency department (ER). Others arrive via ambulance or other emergency medical vehicles. REACH Air Medical Services can airlift your child directly to our facility via a fully equipped medical helicopter or ground ambulance. Manned with a dedicated pediatric transport team, this service quickly transports the most critical patients directly to our heliport for life-saving care.

PICU Discharge/Transfer

After receiving treatment in our PICU, a team of medical professionals will evaluate your child to determine when they are ready to be discharged. Your child may be transferred to our Pediatric Medical/Surgical unit located on the same floor for further, less intensive medical care. This is good news as your child no longer needs constant care but is still monitored until fully recovered. Most children will spend at least some time in the hospital once they leave the PICU, but some patients are able to return home directly from the PICU upon being discharged.

Having a child hospitalized in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit is stressful. But, at The Pediatric Center, we offer compassion and understanding with outstanding medical care. Our goal is to help your child recover quickly so the entire family can be home together again.

What to Expect

Learn more about what to expect if your child needs pediatric intensive care: What to Expect in the PICU.