Lakeland Regional Health to Open County’s Only High-Acuity Intensive Care Unit

Lakeland, FL – Lakeland Regional Health is pleased to now be able to offer families in Polk County and surrounding communities the ease and peace of mind of high-level intensive care for their children right here in Lakeland, beginning September 1, 2020. A 12-bed high-acuity Pediatric Intensive Care Unit is ready to open at the Carol Jenkins Barnett Pavilion for Women and Children.

“Lakeland Regional Health and its Pediatric teams feel very fortunate to be able to provide children who are critically ill with life-saving medical care close to home,” said Timothy J. Regan, MD, President, Lakeland Regional Health Medical Center/Chief Medical. “We want to be here for you and your family when you need us most.”

Among the conditions our Pediatric Intensive Care Unit can now treat:

  • Acute and chronic respiratory insufficiency (asthma, infection, acute lung injury)
  • Circulatory failure (sepsis, shock, heart failure not requiring ECMO)
  • Infectious diseases leading to major organ system dysfunction
  • Endocrine and metabolic disorders (diabetic ketoacidosis, recognition and stabilization
    of inborn errors of metabolism and mitochondrial disorders, hypothyroidism, adrenal crisis)
  • Neurologic diseases (status epilepticus, encephalopathy)
  • Toxic ingestions/exposures
  • Hematologic disease

Lakeland Regional Health’s collaboration with Nemours Children’s Health System allows for staffing the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit with highly skilled Intensivist Specialists. In addition, Pediatric Respiratory Therapists, a specially trained Pediatric Nursing team and two Certified Child Life Specialists will provide close monitoring and care for these young patients.


“I am proud to be a part of this exciting new Pediatric ICU, which will help families in the area find the care they need from specially trained physicians closer to home,” said Al Torres, MD, Nemours Children’s Health System Medical Director of Pediatric Programs at the Partnerships and Medical Director of the PICU at Lakeland Regional Health Medical Center.

The PICU is located on the south side of the sixth floor of the Carol Jenkins Barnett Pavilion for Women and Children, sharing the floor with the Pediatrics Unit. The Pavilion for Women and Children opened in 2018 to serve the women, babies and children of the community.