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The Bambino Gesù Children's Hospital was born in 1869 as the first children's hospital in Italy, thanks to an initiative of the Dukes Salviati, on the model of the Hôpital des Enfants Malades in Paris. In 1924, the Hospital was donated to the Holy See, and became the Hospital of the Pope. In 1985, it was certified by the Italian Ministry of Health as an "Istituto di Ricovero e Cura a Carattere Scientifico IRCCS" (Research Hospital) and its clinical and healthcare activity started going side by side with an intense research activity. In 2006, the Hospital has been accredited for the first time by Joint Commission International (JCI), a recognized leader in international healthcare accreditation. In 2014, the Hospital's new research laboratories have been inaugurated. The new laboratories represent a remarkable technological and infrastructural investment: they cover an area of 500 square meters and are equipped with the most modern instrumentation for cellular and genetic investigations, also including a cell factory entirely dedicated to the large-scale manufacturing of advanced therapies.
The Bambino Gesù Hospital has now become a reference center for the health of children and adolescents from Italy and abroad and is today the largest sub-specialty children's hospital and research center in Europe. It has now over 3,300 employees, and collaborates with the main international organizations in the pediatric field. It is the Italian reference center of Orphanet, the largest database of rare diseases in the world, with 39 participating States.
The Hospital carries out its healthcare activity in 4 premises: the historical headquarters on the Gianicolo hill, the new premises in Saint Paul outside the Walls, in Rome, and the peripheral premises along the Lazio coast, in Palidoro and Santa Marinella. Overall, it has 607 beds of which 52 are in ICU (intensive care unit) and 15 in neonatal semi-intensive care.
Every year, the Hospital counts 28,000 inpatient admissions, 29,000 surgical and interventional procedures, 43,000 Day Hospital days, 84,000 emergency admissions, over 1,900,000 outpatient services: one of the most significant number of pediatric cases in Europe. About 29% of inpatients come from other Italian regions than Lazio, and 15% of inpatients are foreign-born.
The Hospital covers all pediatric sub-specialties. Transplantation, genetic and metabolic diseases, cardiology and cardiac surgery, neuroscience and rehabilitation are among its fields of excellence in research and care. The Bambino Gesù Hospital is the only children's hospital in Europe performing all organ and tissue transplantations: heart, bone marrow, cornea, kidney and liver, these last two also from living donors (321 transplantations only in 2017, of which 10 implants of artificial hearts).
The Hospital clinical activity is accompanied and integrated with an intense activity of reception and assistance to the patients' families, in particular those coming from other regions. Thanks to the help of a network of associations, foundations, and hotels, the Hospital manages to offer free accommodation to approximately 3,500 families, for a total of 90,000 nights per year.
Furthermore, the Bambino Gesù Hospital has promoted a number of interventions of international cooperation in the field of healthcare. It currently has ongoing direct care and educational projects in 9 countries: Central African Republic, Tanzania and Ethiopia, Syria and Jordan, Cambodia, India, China and Russia
Thanks to the support of the Bambino Gesu Foundation (Onlus), every year dozens of patients are admitted to the Hospital pro bono, children from abroad with severe diseases or war wounds, who would not have the possibility to be properly treated in their home countries.
In its commitment for the "suburbs" of the world, the Hospital does not neglect the city of Rome, with its "mobile care unit", reaching the poorer neighborhoods and parishes.