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Advocate Christ Medical Center news

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Advocate Children's Hospital in Oak Lawn Offers New Progam for Grown-Ups Who Are Just Kids at Heart

Oak Lawn, Ill. – Some grown-ups remain kids at heart.

That’s why Advocate Children’s Hospital has launched an adult congenital heart disease program at its Oak Lawn campus and placed it under the newly appointed leadership of Joel T. Hardin, MD.

“Adults with congenital heart disease now outnumber children who have similar health problems in the United States.  Many of these patients do not know how or where to go for follow-up from cardiologists who are specially trained to care for their medical needs,” said Dr. Hardin.

The adult congenital heart disease program at Advocate Children’s Hospital, Oak Lawn, features cardiologists, heart surgeons and nurse practitioners who are able to work collaboratively with a patient’s previous pediatric cardiologist and current adult cardiovascular medicine specialist and primary care physician to provide the kind of coordinated care that meets the patient’s unique needs, Dr. Hardin said.

In addition to integrated care, medical surveillance and therapeutic treatment planning by a team of experts, the adult congenital heart disease program offers patient education and genetic counseling regarding congenital heart defects and guidance on recreational, athletic and occupational activities that could pose a risk for a patient with a congenital heart defect.

Dr. Hardin holds academic appointments as director of pediatric cardiology and associate professor of pediatrics and medicine at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine, and adjunct associate professor of pediatrics at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.  He also serves as president of the Chicago Adult Congenital Heart (CATCH) network of major academic medical centers in the metropolitan Chicago area.

He is a fellow of the American Heart Association Council of Cardiovascular Disease in the Young, the American College of Cardiology and the American Academy of Pediatrics and has authored or co-authored some 25 journal articles, book chapters and abstracts on pediatric cardiology and congenital heart defects.  Among his major research interests are the clinical characteristics and medical and surgical management of children and infants with complex congenital heart disease.

After earning his MD degree from the University of Tennessee College of Medicine in 1987, Dr. Hardin completed three years of internship and residency training in pediatrics and three years of fellowship training in pediatric cardiology at St. Louis Children’s Hospital / Washington University School of Medicine.

He has been a visiting lecturer at a variety of health care institutions in the United States and an invited speaker at national and international meetings.  His topics have included the care and management of adult patients with congenital heart disease.

More information about the new Advocate Children’s Hospital adult congenital heart disease program is available by calling 708.684.5580.

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About Advocate Children’s Hospital
As part of Advocate Health Care, Advocate Children’s Hospital is the largest network provider of pediatric services in Illinois and among the top 10 in the nation. The two main campuses are located in the Chicago metropolitan region – Oak Lawn in the southwest and Park Ridge in the northwest, with additional services accessible at other Advocate hospitals throughout the state.  Advocate Children’s Hospital serves as a major referral center for infants and children.  Through a special, wholistic approach, Advocate Children’s Hospital combines some of the country’s most respected medical talent with exceptional and compassionate care.  In fact, the children’s hospital has been recognized by U.S. News & World Report as one of the nation’s leaders in pediatric cardiology and neonatology, and numerous physicians have been cited as being among the “Top Doctors” regionally and nationally in their respective fields.  Advocate Children’s Hospital is staffed by more than 400 pediatricians and 230 pediatric subspecialists who offer a wide range of services for children.

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