Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital

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SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital
Sisters of St. Mary/SSM Health Care
Location 1465 South Grand Boulevard
St. Louis, Missouri, United States
Care system SSM Health Care
Hospital type Pediatric
Affiliated university Department of Pediatrics, Saint Louis University School of Medicine
Emergency department Level I trauma center
Founded 1956; 60 years ago (1956)
Lists Hospitals in Missouri

SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital is a not-for-profit 195-bed inpatient and outpatient pediatric medical center. As the nation’s only free-standing, Catholic children’s hospital,[citation needed] Cardinal Glennon has provided care for children regardless of ability to pay since 1956. Cardinal Glennon primarily serves children from eastern Missouri and southern Illinois, but also treats children across the United States and from countries around the world.

Cardinal Glennon also serves as a teaching hospital affiliated with the neighboring Saint Louis University Schools of Medicine and Nursing, and nine other education institutes. Cardinal Glennon is a member of SSM Health Care, one of the largest Catholic health care systems in the country. SSM Health is sponsored by the Franciscan Sisters of Mary and owns, operates and manages 19 acute care hospitals in four states — Missouri, Illinois, Wisconsin and Oklahoma. In 2002, SSM Health was the first health care organization in the country to be named a Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award winner.


Originally named Cardinal Glennon Memorial Hospital for Children after John Cardinal Glennon the Archbishop of St. Louis from 1903-1946, SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital first opened its doors in July 1956. It was the Archbishop's mission to see a health care facility open to all children in need of medical care.

The sun displayed prominently atop Cardinal Glennon's name has been the hospital's symbol for many years. It represents hope, warmth, caring, commitment, and excellence.


Cardinal Glennon is home to physician experts in more than 60 areas of pediatric medical specialties including cardiology, critical care, rehabilitation, pulmonology, minimally invasive surgery, fetal surgery, hematology/oncology, sleep disorders, weight management and others.

The hospital is home to the Level 1 pediatric trauma center and a Level 4 neonatal intensive care unit, both the highest available classification, and the St. Louis Fetal Care Institute. The St. Louis Fetal Care Institute is the only comprehensive fetal care center in middle America.

Other Things[edit]

In addition, the hospital offers:

  • The St. Louis Cord Blood Bank, the world’s second largest public bank of life-saving cord blood stem cells (derived ethically from the umbilical cord and placenta, rather than fetal tissue).
  • Bob Costas Cancer Center, including a 16-bed in-patient unit, a day hospital and a stem cell transplant unit.
  • The Dana Brown Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, the first all-private 60-bed unit of its kind.
  • The Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, a 19-bed, Level I Trauma unit.
  • The Dorothy and Larry Dallas Heart Center, bringing together diagnosis and treatment of pediatric heart issues.
  • The Dan Dierdorf Pediatric Emergency and Trauma Center, the state’s first and longest-running Level I Trauma Center, which saw more than 46,000 patients in 2009.
  • The Missouri Poison Center, which handles more than 190,000 adult and child poison exposure calls each year.
  • The Knights of Columbus Developmental Center, providing exams and care for children with developmental disabilities such as autism.
  • The School Partnership Program, which partners with the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of St. Louis to provide nurse screenings of parochial school students for vision, hearing and blood pressure.

The "firsts"[edit]

Cardinal Glennon was the first medical center to:

  • perform both a living-related liver transplant and split liver transplant in Missouri
  • perform an infant kidney transplant in Missouri
  • feature Cleft Palate, Genetics and Neurofibromatosis clinics in the state
  • operate both a Pediatric Sleep Disorders Program and Lab in St. Louis
  • provide fully trained pediatricians in the Emergency Department 24 hours a day in the region
  • be deemed a Level I Pediatric Trauma Center in the state
  • open a dedicated Pediatric Rehabilitation Unit in Missouri
  • establish a Cord Blood Bank in the region; was one of the first four in the nation
  • provide a Poison Control Center in Missouri; it is the third busiest in the nation
  • have a board-certified medical toxicologist in the St. Louis region
  • perform a laparoscopic node dissection for Genito Urinary cancer in a child
  • set up molecular DNA testing for the most heritable form of mental retardation (Fragile-X syndrome) in Missouri

Commitment to excellent care[edit]

In 2010, Cardinal Glennon welcomed 46,157 patients to the emergency department. The hospital had a total of 6,964 admissions with physicians performing 1,806 inpatient and 5,844 outpatient surgeries. There are over 575 physicians and about 550 nurses on staff. In addition, Cardinal Glennon embraces over 41,000 hours of volunteer service every year.


Since 1996, more than $200 million has been invested in facility expansion. In 2009, Cardinal Glennon opened the St. Louis Fetal Care Institute.

Coming soon: A “hybrid” cardiac surgery and catheterization suite that will save lives and reduce the number of surgeries required for heart patients, particularly very young infants.

Celebrity supporters[edit]

World-renowned sportscaster Bob Costas has provided a tremendous amount of support to Cardinal Glennon, annually hosting an event at the Fabulous Fox Theatre that donates proceeds to the hospital, in addition to his sponsorship of the “Bob Costas Cancer Center.” Former NFL St. Louis Rams Quarter-back Kurt Warner sponsored the “Warner’s Corner,” an interactive playroom for pre-teen, and teenaged in-house patients. Former American football player and current television sportscaster Dan Dierdorf sponsored “The Dan Dierdorf Pediatric Emergency and Trauma Center.”


The Pediatric Research Institute at SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital operates to improve and assure the health and safety of children in the greater St. Louis area. By promoting research that advances the knowledge and management of childhood health and diseases, a number of nationally known physician-scientists from the Saint Louis University School of Medicine conduct research that can be applied to the clinical setting to improve disease prevention and treatment. Ongoing programs include the study of pediatric infections and vaccine development, cardiac transplant rejection, liver diseases (particularly related to alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency and abnormal iron metabolism), metabolic diseases (Morquio Syndrome) and neonatal lung inflammation.


Coordinates: 38°37′16″N 90°14′21″W / 38.6212°N 90.2392°W / 38.6212; -90.2392