Our Unique Approach

We’re proud of our expertise in spinal cord injury care. Our recent outcomes surpassed those of other similar pediatric facilities in the U.S.

In 2018, we discharged 100 percent of our traumatic and non-traumatic spinal cord injury patients to their homes, compared with similar pediatric facilities average of 84.4 percent for non-traumatic and 75.3 for traumatic SCI.

Services We Offer

At Children’s, we focus on healing the child’s body, mind and spirit. We help children and teens with spinal cord injuries achieve maximum independence. We also teach caregivers and others how to best provide care and assistance. We help ventilator-dependent patients communicate more effectively by using adaptive and assistive technology.

Our program offers a wide range of services, including:

Ventilator Program

The Ventilator Program is designed for children and teens who have sustained injuries or illnesses that affect their breathing ability. Our multidisciplinary team works closely with you to help wean your child off the ventilator when possible. If your child must remain on the ventilator, the team will help prepare you and your child for a smooth transition home.


Our care team’s primary objectives are to:

  • Wean your child from the ventilator as much as possible, and offer assistance and support to you and your child through the process
  • Improve your child’s respiratory muscle strength through nutritional support and therapy
  • Encourage speech and oral feeding, when appropriate

Multidisciplinary approach

The Ventilator Program team collaborates with professionals in many specialized services at Children’s to make your child’s breathing as easy as possible. These include:

  • Pediatric pulmonary medicine
  • Pediatric respiratory therapy
  • Pediatric rehabilitation medicine
  • Case management
  • Child and adolescent life program
  • Clinical social work
  • Music therapy
  • Occupational therapy
  • Pastoral therapy
  • Recreation therapy
  • Rehabilitation nursing
  • Speech-language pathology
  • School program
  • Physical therapy
  • Neuropsychology
  • Clinical nutrition

Peer Mentorship Program

Spinal cord injury and disease

Your healthcare journey with a spinal cord injury or disease has been courageous and difficult. You are encouraged to join Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta to share your recovery story with another young patient just as their journey is about to begin.

Who can be a peer mentor?

  • Survivor of a spinal cord injury or disease or someone who has been a caregiver
  • At least one year post-inpatient rehabilitation or discharge
  • Reliable, dependable, trustworthy, knowledgeable, resourceful, strong listening skills and active
  • Able to visit the inpatient rehabilitation unit and Children’s Day Rehab Program, as well as connect with patients by phone or social media
  • Answer questions about the impact of spinal cord injury or disease on you, including healthy living habits, living in the community and finding transportation accommodations
  • Provide hope, encouragement and life skills to others with a spinal cord injury or disease
  • Participate in on-site training with our day rehabilitation staff by special request

Are you interested in becoming a peer mentor?

We are looking for individuals who would like to partner with the Children’s rehabilitation team and become a peer mentor to a child who has a spinal cord injury or disease. You will visit and mentor children while they are in the hospital and participating in day rehabilitation.

For more information or to be considered as a peer mentor, contact:

Kelsey Cebula
Comprehensive Inpatient Rehabilitation Unit
Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta