Kansas City,
12:12 PM

Children’s Mercy Kansas City to Collaborate with Springfield Community on New Pediatric System of Care for All Children in Southwest Missouri

Children’s Mercy Kansas City, a leading independent children’s health organization, is excited to collaborate with Mercy Hospital Springfield for the expansion of Children’s Mercy’s world-class system of pediatric care and translational research into Southwest Missouri. This collaboration will enable most children to access care right in their own community without having to travel hours for appointments. Children’s Mercy and Mercy Hospital Springfield are working together to define the scope of services and necessary agreements that will guide this investment in the health and well-being of all children throughout Southwest Missouri.

Earlier this week, Mercy Hospital Springfield announced a collaboration with Children's Mercy with the goal of expanding access to world-class pediatric care, translational research, and other services to children and families across Southwest Missouri. The collaboration announcement is the culmination of a year-long search surveying those in the community to identify the preferred organization to help elevate pediatric care in Southwest Missouri.

“We are thrilled at the prospect of working alongside Mercy to expand access to outstanding specialty care and groundbreaking research for all children and families in the region,” said Paul Kempinski, MS, FACHE, President and CEO, Children’s Mercy Kansas City. “Community engagement is fundamental to our approach to improving the well-being of children. Over the next several months, as we work out the agreements with Mercy, we will engage with local businesses, organizations, community providers and families to determine what is needed most to help improve the lives of all children in the greater Southwest Missouri area. Our plans are not exclusive to Mercy patients – we aim to serve all children in the region.”

Children’s Mercy’s vision to create a world of well-being for all children is deeply rooted in our history. Founded by siblings Dr. Katharine Berry Richardson, a physician, and Dr. Alice Berry Graham, a dentist, they took in a 5-year-old malnourished girl abandoned on the street and after surgery, therapy and care, she walked again.

That mission is still the heart and soul of Children’s Mercy with patients traveling from all 50 states and 14 countries to receive care from one of the top pediatric hospitals in the country, which includes families traveling from Southwest Missouri.

“We live near Springfield but choose to continue our son’s care with his doctor and team in Kansas City because the care he receives is just not comparable,” one Springfield family shared.

Another Springfield family commented, “We drive from Springfield to come to these providers because they are the best when it comes to the care of my daughter, and I trust them.”

Providing specialized care closer to home for these families is a priority for Children’s Mercy.

“This collaboration holds the promise that families in the region will no longer need to drive several hours for appointments and care, which will have a positive impact on this community,” said Mary Ann Queen, MD, Vice President, Regional and Diagnostic Services and Medical Staff President, Children’s Mercy Kansas City. “When parents and caregivers are able to stay close to their local support system it reduces stress to the child and minimizes disruptions for the entire family – ultimately, helping improve outcomes.”

Children’s Mercy consistently ranks among America’s Best Children’s Hospitals by U.S. News & World Report for nephrology, neonatology, orthopedics, urology, cardiology and heart surgery, gastroenterology, neurology/neurosurgery, pulmonology, endocrinology, and hematology/oncology, and is ranked the #1 children’s hospital in Missouri.

It is also one of only ten centers in the nation to be verified as a Level 1 Children’s Surgery Center — the highest possible rating — by the American College of Surgeons. This verification means Children’s Mercy meets the highest standards for safety and outcomes determined by the American College of Surgeons.

Children’s Mercy is home to the Children’s Mercy Research Institute and is a national leader in pediatric translational research. It is among the first in the world to integrate the most technologically advanced pediatric genomic sequencing in the clinical setting.

In addition, Children’s Mercy is the only hospital in Missouri to receive five successive Magnet designations – the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Magnet Recognition Program, which recognizes health care organizations that provide the best possible quality in nursing.

“Children’s Mercy Kansas City is the #1 children’s hospital in Missouri, and I am thrilled they are planning to serve the children in the community I call home,” said Christina Dempsey, DNP, Children’s Mercy Kansas City board member and Springfield resident. “As a nurse, I know first-hand their capabilities in providing excellent pediatric specialty care and translational research. Their commitment to partner with the community can foster the well-being of children throughout Springfield and the region.”