Children's Hospital Colorado

Colorado Fetal Care Center at Children's Hospital Colorado Celebrates Its 10-Year Anniversary

Children's Hospital Colorado | November 12, 2021
Dr. Galan talks with a woman in the maternal fetal program.

The Colorado Fetal Care Center at Children’s Hospital Colorado has grown into a globally renowned leader in its field in the 10 years it has been treating some of the most challenging fetal conditions in children before and after birth.

Our world-class team

Since opening in 2011, the Center has emerged as a true innovator and catalyst for progress in the field of fetal care, on the strength of a world-class multi-disciplinary team of fetal surgeons, maternal fetal medicine specialists, fetal cardiologists, pediatric surgeons, neonatologists, psychologists, genetics experts, fetal radiologists, maternal and fetal anesthesiologists, labor & delivery and NICU nurses, and specialized technicians. The quality and continuum of care the Center provides are integral to the best-in-class track record the team has built in just 10 years.

Keeping families connected

Beginning with the initial consultation that includes leading experts in nearly every specialty, families are informed of their options and expected outcomes. With a labor and delivery suite just down the hall, families are able to stay connected as their babies are cared for in the NICU.

 “When my doctor diagnosed my baby in utero with a rare chorioangioma, I knew I would have to travel for specialized treatment,” said Albuquerque mom, Veronica Robinson. “As I was considering my options, I met with the team at the Center and talked to my maternal fetal specialist. I quickly knew that they were the team who could and would ultimately save my son’s life.”

Setting a standard of excellence 

  • Caring for patients from across the state, region and U.S. Patients come to the team from across the state as well as the region and across the country to be treated for fetal abnormalities like Congenital Pulmonary Airway Malformation, fetal heart conditions like Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome and Heart Block, conditions affecting twins like Twin-to-Twin Transfusion Syndrome and Conjoined twins, genetic disorders such as Down Syndrome and Turner Syndrome, and abdominal wall defects like gastroschisis, giant omphalocele, and Cloacal Exstrophy, as well as congenital diaphragmatic hernias and more.
  • A hive of activity. Close to 700 fetal surgeries have been performed in the Center, along with 1,500+ deliveries, 34,500+ ultrasounds, 2,400+ fetal MRIs and 13,600+ fetal echocardiograms.
  • A busy, boundary-expanding research culture, through which the Center, its doctors and staff are consistently innovating with fetal interventions and treatments. The Center and its doctors are engaged in more than 20 active research studies.
  • Setting a standard for excellence. The Center has earned the Society for Obstetric Anesthesia and Perinatology's (SOAP) Center of Excellence designation, along with a five-star (highest possible) rating for patient and family experience.
  • Embracing the challenge. The care team treats some of the most complex and rare cases and diagnoses in its field, including Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia, Myelomeningocele, Twin-to-Twin Transfusion Syndrome and Giant Omphalocele.

One of a kind in a seven-state region

“When parents get a diagnosis that their baby has an anomaly, it is rightfully terrifying for them,” said Michael Zaretsky, MD, maternal fetal specialist, fetal surgeon and co-director of the Center who is also celebrating almost 10 years with the center. “As the only center of its kind in the seven-state region, we see rare diagnoses every day and have the training and experience to treat even the most uncommon developmental concerns.”

Adapting during COVID-19

During the ongoing COVID-19 health crisis, the Center also has adapted to the needs of its patients d their families by expanding its telehealth capabilities and capacity, so patients can access the Center’s multidisciplinary expertise remotely, without the health risks of travel. In 2020 alone, patients used its Maternal and Fetal Telemedicine Program for more than 2,000 virtual visits.

What sets us apart

Whether in person or via Zoom, it’s that depth and breadth of expertise that has set the Center apart during its first 10 years. “It’s not unusual for a mom-to-be and her unborn baby to come to us with multiple issues. These kinds of complex cases are rare for most hospitals but are common here. It is with these complex cases where our multi-disciplinary team really shines and as a result consistently deliver the best possible outcomes for the families we treat,” said Ken Liechty, MD, pediatric and fetal surgeon at the Center.