For Parents and Children

Children with diabetes are very special to us. We see more than 3,000 of them. They need special care—and at the Naomi Berrie Diabetes Center they get it.

The Berrie Center has one of the largest pediatric diabetes programs. It manages one of the largest numbers of patients with adolescent-onset Type 2 diabetes and one of the largest insulin pump programs in the country.

Bring along your friends and family

Just when children want to belong and be like their friends, managing their diabetes day to day can make them feel isolated. We encourage all parents and kids to bring family and friends along when they visit.

Visiting the Berrie Center

The special care we give our pediatric patients begins right in the waiting room. The Berrie Center includes a child-friendly waiting area for our many pediatric patients. Toys, interactive games, art supplies, and computers keep kids entertained and there’s even an area set aside for homework.

Because a visit to the Berrie Center can include several appointments, it can last longer than a regular doctor visit. A fully equipped pantry does double duty, providing healthy, diabetes-friendly snacks as well as nutritional education. (More popular still, it’s not uncommon for a child to take home a new toy at the end of a visit.)

A special team for our special patients

On the pediatric team are pediatric endocrinologists—diabetes specialists—pediatric nurse educators, pediatric nutritionists, a pediatric psychologist, ophthalmologist, even a child life specialist. They work closely with the child, the family and each other to see that the diabetes is managed as well as it can be.

We can also tap into our outside network, including Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital of New York-Presbyterian. To avoid burdening patients’ families, records are kept together and coordinated by a single case manager.

Because so much of diabetes management depends on education and training, children and their families get the information and education that’s designed for the child’s age group.

The family’s all here. And here everyone gets to learn

The Berrie Center is also home to the Becton Dickinson Family Learning Center, with its multimedia learning wall, allowing patients—and their families—to learn about managing diabetes by interacting with information that’s targeted to their own needs. The education wall also houses a rotating exhibit of special diabetes topics.

The Berrie Center teaches school

When a child leaves the Center, that’s just the beginning of the challenges they have to deal with. The Berrie Center pediatric team makes school visits to explain to school nurses, teachers, coaches, and classmates, how they can help children with diabetes. It’s a way to build confidence for those at school who spend time with the child every day—as well as the patient and the family.

Just being children together

Halloween at the Berrie Center? More than a hundred kids—and adults—learn how to have fun on Halloween and (by counting carbs) even eat candy with their family and friends.

February school vacation is time for a one-day ice skating program.

Then, when summer comes around, there’s the annual Berrie Center Day Camp for 20 underserved children with diabetes between ages 8 and 15. Supervised by Berrie Center staff, older teenaged patients and summer interns, the group visits landmarks like the Statue of Liberty, and events such as a Yankees game. A highlight is the visit to the Berrie Center labs where children get to see first-hand the kind of research that could one day make a difference in their treatment and their lives. And, as much fun as programs like these are, they also help children learn to better manage their diabetes.