Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC Joins Nation’s First Federally Funded Pediatric Research Network for Emergency Care

October 6, 2011

The Division of Pediatric Emergency Medicine at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC has received a grant that will support its participation in the Pediatric Emergency Care Applied Research Network (PECARN). PECARN is the nation's first federally funded pediatric research network focused on emergency care in children. Children's Hospital is one of only 18 pediatric emergency departments in the country to be selected as part of the research network.

PECARN is organized around six research "nodes," each with three affiliated Pediatric Emergency Departments. Children's will lead the PRIDENET node partnered with Hasbro Children’s Hospital (Brown University) and A.I. duPont Hospital for Children (Jefferson University). The PRIDENET node will receive $630,000 in annual funding to support the hiring of a research administrator and one or more research nurses who will enroll patients in studies during emergency department visits.

The PRIDENET node will establish a regional research network to prevent and reduce child and youth morbidity and mortality.

“This is an exciting and important opportunity for our division to partner with nationally recognized researchers within a network delivering emergency care to 1.2 million children annually,” said Robert Hickey, M.D., a physician in Children’s Division of Pediatric Emergency Medicine and the node principal investigator. “The network includes many of the best children’s hospitals in the country, and we are proud to join this effort to improve pediatric emergency care.”

PECARN was founded in 2001 and is funded through grants from the Emergency Medical Services for Children, a branch of the Health Resources Services Administration Maternal and Child Health Bureau.

To date, PECARN researchers have produced 33 research publications and 68 presentations at national scientific meetings. Ongoing research through PECARN includes studies on head trauma, bronchiolitis, pediatric diabetic ketoacidosis and other important areas of children's health.

For more information about the Division of Pediatric Emergency Medicine at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, please visit

Andrea Kunicky, 412-692-6254,
Marc Lukasiak, 412-692-7919,