Services & Specialties
Joint Pediatric and Congenital Heart Program with Kentucky Children’s Hospital

Heart patient smiling during her visit for treatment.

Nationally Recognized Experts. Nationally Ranked Care.

When it comes to pediatric heart conditions, getting the absolute best care possible is vital. That’s what UK HealthCare Kentucky Children’s Hospital and Cincinnati Children’s have teamed up to provide, combining the expertise of the #1 hospital in Kentucky with one of the country’s best children’s hospitals. Led by nationally recognized experts, the collaboration is one of the top ten pediatric heart programs in the country, according to the U.S. News & World Report 2023 - 2024 Best Children’s Hospitals rankings.

The Joint Pediatric and Congenital Heart Program offers a full spectrum of pediatric and adult congenital heart care from the world-class cardiology experts and heart surgeons at Cincinnati Children’s and Kentucky Children’s Hospital. It’s an innovative collaboration dedicated to providing high-level heart care closer to home.

What Sets Us Apart

Our one program, two sites model provides care at the location most appropriate for Kentucky patients and their family. This includes: 

  • Leadership of Carl Backer, MD, who is chief of pediatric cardiothoracic surgery at Kentucky Children’s Hospital, in addition to his primary appointment as a cardiothoracic surgeon at Cincinnati Children’s. Dr. Backer has extensive experience and expertise as a cardiac surgeon, and a long track record of leadership in the field. 
  • Specialized team for patients of all ages with pediatric and adult congenital heart disease, including adult congenital cardiology
  • Advanced pediatric cardiac imaging onsite
  • Dedicated Pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (PCICU) with specially trained cardiac care team members (CICU MDs, RNs and APPs)
  • A pediatric cardiac operating room and team of dedicated pediatric cardiac anesthesiologists, interventional catheterization and EP providers, surgeon and perfusion team
  • Sub-specialty telehealth clinics to connect families, patients and providers from Kentucky Children’s Hospital with experts at Cincinnati Children’s for additional convenience to the patients and their families
  • More than 20 outreach clinics throughout Kentucky for increased access

Along with these services provided, the expert team shares the same joint safety and quality reporting standards, including public reporting of surgical results to the Society of Thoracic Surgeons National Database as well as catheterization and electrophysiology results to IMPACT. We maximize our patients’ quality of life and survival.