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Children's Heart Centre

We provide health care, education and support to children and adolescents living with heart disease.
About

At the BC Children's Hospital Heart Centre, it is our mission to provide excellent health care to children with congenital and acquired heart disease by providing leadership in family-centred care, clinical practice, education and research throughout BC and the Yukon.

Our multi-disciplinary team of experts work together to provide exemplary services spanning from antenatal diagnosis to early adulthood care. The Centre also plays an active role in educating and training student nurses, allied health professionals, and physicians. 

Our clinic locations

BC Children's Hospital

Our clinic is located in the main hospital building.

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Surrey Memorial Hospital

Each month, we conduct several pediatric cardiology clinics at Surrey Memorial Hospital. The hospital is located at: 13750 - 96th Avenue, Surrey, BC.

Community clinics

We also provide clinics at several locations throughout the province, through our Provincial Partnerships program. See Community Clinics.

If your child has recently been diagnosed with heart disease, many questions arise about your child’s heart condition and care needs. 


An individual consultation with a Children’s Heart Centre nurse clinician or clinical nurse specialist can provide:

  • detailed information about your child’s heart condition
  • a discussion and written information on planned diagnostic tests and procedures
  • a review of how to optimize your child’s care, both before and after surgery
  • information on when to seek additional medical attention for your child
  • information and referrals to hospital and community support services
  • links to reliable websites for further information on specific forms of heart disease
  • opportunities for connections with resource parents available for parent-to-parent support through Children’s Heart Network
  • information about upcoming conferences, youth events and family support services
  • help with infants and children who have difficulty feeding or gaining weight, due to some forms of congenital heart disease. Members of the Children’s Heart Centre health care team including dieticians, nurses, occupational therapists and lactation consultants are available for individual consultation and support
  • one-to-one consultation and written information on any medications that have been prescribed, including proper administration, side effects, and monitoring requirements
  • information and support concerning additional medications or immunizations to decrease the risk of certain infectious diseases such as Respiratory Synctial Virus (RSV)
  • additional support to meet developmental milestones - the health care team is available to discuss these concerns with you and to refer you to appropriate hospital and community services
 

The Children’s Heart Centre provides specialized support for patients 12-18 years of age living with congenital heart disease. These are some of services and resources:

  • Individual consultations with adolescents to review their diagnosis of congenital heart disease and management plan. 
  • ON TRAC - a specialized transition initiative that focuses on preparing adolescents for ongoing medical follow-up in an adult-based care facility.
  • Hearts of Gold – an educational and support group for youth aged 13-19 living with congenital heart disease. This support program for youth is provided in collaboration with Children’s Heart Network.
  • A two-day camp for youth living with congenital heart disease is organized through Hearts of Gold at Camp Summit, Squamish, BC.
  • Collaborative conference entitled “Growing Up With Heart Disease” which provides free registration for youth aged 13-19 living with congenital heart disease. Conference topics cover a wide range of subjects, including transitioning to adult care, sexual health issues, and medical and surgical advances in the treatment and management of congenital heart defects.
  • “Just For Teens” chapter in Heart and Soul.

In addition, specialized youth services are available through the Youth Program
 
Written resources in the Family Resource Library include:

  • Getting on Trac: A Workbook for Youth Living With Chronic Health Conditions.
  • The Plan-It: A Health Day-timer for Youth.
 

The Children’s Heart Centre team provides support to families who have a child receiving palliative care or who have had a child die from congenital or acquired heart disease. 


A multidisciplinary team of physicians, nurses, psychologists, social workers, and child life specialists are available to provide various forms of support. Health care providers from Children’s Heart Centre work closely with family members, community professionals and other health care agencies such as Canuck Place Children’s Hospice to provide comprehensive and family-centred care.
 
Families are also encouraged to visit the Griefworks BC for additional information and support.

 


Prepare

What to bring

Please bring the following to your appointment:
  • Appointment information; which can be found on your patient itinerary (i.e. time, doctor's name, department, location)
  • BC Care Card
  • Hospital blue card (if your child doesn't have a blue card, please register at patient registration in the lobby prior to your appointment)
  • Any new or recent medical or personal records, such as new x-rays or lab tests
  • A list of current medications and dosages (including herbal supplements and vitamins)
  • A list of questions or concerns, should you have any, that you may want to discuss with the health care team
Your visit will be about 2 to 3 hours long. This is to allow us to provide a complete assessment of your child. 

Younger siblings may find this tiring, and although they are welcome, alternative babysitting arrangements may make your visit more comfortable. You may also bring books, games, music, drinks and snacks, and other items to help your children pass the time.

What to expect

The clinic will do assessments and diagnostics.

Assessments

The team will review your child's medical history, understand recent concerns and complete a full physical assessment which will include some or all of the following:

  • Measuring height and weight
  • Listening to the chest with a stethoscope
  • Assessing the pulses in your child's hands and feet
  • Measuring oxygen saturations with a sensor that wraps around a finger or toe

Diagnostics

Diagnostic procedures take anywhere from 15-30 mins in length. Please dress you child in comfortable clothing that can be easily opened or removed (no onsies or tight clothing)

This procedure only takes a few minutes and consists of placing "stickers" on your child's arms, chest, and legs.

 

This procedure can take up to 60 minutes and requires your child to lie down and stay still while the technician takes pictures of the heart. 


You may bring in items (music, DVD, tablet) to help keep your child still for as long as possible. 


Some children 3 years and under may require a mild sedative. We will let you if your child will be sedated once your appointment is scheduled. To make the sedative more effection, we suggest that your child fast prior to the procedure:

  • 5 hours from solids

  • 4 hours from formula

  • 3 hours from breast milk

  • 2 hours from clear fluids

 

This procedure takes 30 mins and your child will be asked to walk, speed walk, and jog on a treadmill while being closely monitored. You will be informed ahead of time if a stress test is needed. Please wear appropriate running clothes such as track pants or shorts and running shoes and avoid very tight work out clothes (sports bras)

 

This procedure takes 20 minutes and consists of placing 4 'stickers' and a magnet over the skin of the pacemaker site.

 

Preparing for surgery

We believe that parents are partners in your child's health-care team and we want you to be as informed as possible. 


These information booklets will help you and your child prepare for a medical procedure or surgery. 


For our guide to living with congenital heart disease, see Heart & Soul in the Heart Disease section in Health Info. 

For more about how to prepare for surgery, including a virtual tour of surgery at BC Children's Hospital, see Surgery.
Our team

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Dr. Shubhayan Sanatani, BSc, MD, FRCPC, FHRS

Division Head and Medical Director, BCCH Heart Centre
Associate Professor, University of British Columbia
Contact: 604-875-2295

Dr Sanatani joined the Heart Centre team in 2001 and served as the Director of Cardiac Pacing and Electrophysiology until being appointed Division Head and Medical Director in 2015.

He obtained his medical degree at the University of British Columbia, completed his Pediatric Residency and Pediatric Cardiology Fellowship at Queen’s University, and pursued further subspecialty training at Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Kids and St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver.

Dr. Sanatani has a clinical and research focus in electrophysiology with special interest in supraventricular tachycardia, post-operative arrhythmias, and sudden death in the young. As an associate professor at UBC, he has established a successful electrophysiology research program, has numerous publications, and holds several research grants for investigating arrhythmias. Apart from his academic responsibilities, Dr Sanatani is a member of the Canadian Heart Rhythm Society and elected Vice President of Research for the Pediatric and Congenital Electrophysiology Society (PACES). 

Dr Sanatani is also an enthusiastic runner and has completed numerous marathons, co-organized the first Malpractice Cup, and is one of the founders of the Pediahatricks hockey franchise. 

 

Dr. Sanjiv Gandhi, MD, FRCSC, FACS

Chief of Pediatric, Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery
Clinical Professor, University of British Columbia
Contact: 604-875-3165

Dr Gandhi joined the Heart Centre team in 2010 after serving as the attending surgeon, and surgical director of both the heart failure program and the pediatric cardiac intensive care unit at the St. Louis Children’s Hospital in Missouri.

Dr Gandhi obtained his medical degree at McGill University, and then went on to complete his general surgery residency at St. Louis University, his cardiothoracic surgery research fellowship at Washington University, and cardiothoracic surgery residency at the University of Pittsburgh and Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Kids.

He is currently the Chief  of Pediatric, Cardiovascular, and Thoracic Surgery at BC Children’s Hospital and is experienced in all aspects of congenital heart surgery, with particular expertise in complex neonatal procedures, pediatric electrophysiology, Cardiopulmonary transplantation and mechanical support for pediatric heart failure.

Dr. Gandhi successfully spearheaded the proposal and development of a Pediatric Heart Transplant Program at BCCH that was finally approved and implemented by the Health Authority, in conjunction with the BC Transplant Society, in 2013. To complement his numerous clinical accomplishments, Dr. Gandhi is a member of several prestigious clinical societies such as: The American Association for Thoracic Surgery, The Congenital Heart Surgeons Society, the Society for Thoracic Surgeons, the International Pediatric Transplant Association, and the International Society of Heart and Lung Transplantation. 

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Dr. Derek Human, MA, BM, BCh, MRCP(UK), FRCPC, FACC

Pediatric Cardiologist, BCCH Heart Centre

Clinical Professor, University of British Columbia

Contact: 604-875-2296

 

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Dr. Walter Duncan, MD, FRCPC, FACC

Pediatric Cardiologist, BCCH Heart Centre

Program Director, Pediatric Cardiology Training Program

Clinical Professor, University of British Columbia

Contact: 604-875-3878

 

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Dr. Kevin Harris, MD, MHSc, FRCPC

Interventional Cardiologist

Director of Preventive Cardiology 

Director of Research, BCCH Heart Centre

Assistant Professor, University of British Columbia

Associate Clinical Scientist, CFRI

Contact: 604-875-3878

 

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Dr. Elizabeth Sherwin, MD

Pediatric Cardiologist & Electrophysiologist

Director of Cardiac Pacing and Electrophysiology, BCCH Heart Centre

Clinical Assistant Professor, University of British Columbia

Contact: 604-875-2295

 

Dr. Martin Hosking, MD, FRCP(C), FACC, FAAP

Pediatric Cardiologist, BCCH Heart Centre

Clinical Associate Professor, University of British Columbia

Contact: 604-875-2296

 

Dr. Shreya Moodley, MD, FRCP, FAAP

Pediatric & Fetal Cardiologist, BCCH Heart Centre

Clinical Associate Professor, University of British Columbia

Contact: 604-875-2295

 

Dr. Brian Sinclair, MD

Pediatric Cardiologist, Vancouver Island

Clinical Associate Professor, University of British Columbia

 

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Dr. Andrew Campbell, MD FRCS(C)

Pediatric Cardiac Surgeon, BCCH Heart Centre

Assistant Professor, University of British Columbia

Contact: 604-875-3165

 

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Connie Ens, RN

Nurse Clinician, BCCH Heart Centre

 

Leslie Raffin, RN, BSN

Nurse Clinician, BCCH Heart Centre

 

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Anna Murray, RN, BSc, BSN

Nurse Clinician, BCCH Heart Centre

 

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Stella Cockett, RN, BSN

Nurse Clinician, BCCH Partnership Clinic

 

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Jan Frew, RN, BSN

Nurse Clinician, BCCH Surrey Clinic

 

Linda Adams, RN, MSN, CNCCP(C)

Clinical Nurse Specialist, BCCH Heart Centre

 

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Rosella MaCarthy, RN, MSN, CNCCP(C)

Clinical Nurse Specialist, BCCH Heart Centre

 

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Tessa Gresley-Jones, RN, MN, NP(peds)

Nurse Practitioner, BCCH Heart Centre

 

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Emily Tai, RN, MN, NP(peds)

Nurse Practitioner, Cardiothoracic Surgery

 

Misty Reis, RN, MN, NP(peds)

Nurse Practitioner, Cardiothoracic Surgery

 

You can contact any of the Heart Center nurses by calling: 604-875-2345 ext. 7877

 

Echocardiographers

  • Jessica Cochrane, Echo Supervisor
  • Eustace DeSouza
  • Raman Gill
  • Shona Hennessey
  • AJ Hollinger
  • Lindsey Williams
  • Joshua Coulson
  • Kim Clemens

Cardiovascular Technologists

  • Amy Hart, EP Technician
  • Claudia Elena Georgescu
  • Katarina Gutierrez 
  • Jordanne Toews
  • Kayla Williams
  • Nellie Villanueva
  • Jennifer
  • Gabriel Goilav
  • Alex Orpen

Exercise Physiologists

  • Dr. Jim Potts, PhD
  • Astrid De Souza

Staff

  • Ashika Narayan, Receptionist
  • June Albrecht, Program Secretary
  • Diana Campanile, Clinic Secretary, UBC Program Secretary
  • Danielle Burch, Clinic Secretary
  • Celia Magraw, Cardiac Surgery Secretary
  • Theresa Bazin, Research and Surgical Booking Coordinator
  • Farisha Kahn, Partnership Program Secretary
  • Michelle Legaspi, UBC Adademic Coordinator
  • Lana Woo, Booking Secretary
  • Veronica Vargas, Booking Secretary
 


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