Pediatrics

Critical Care (PICU)

Allan de Caen poses on the helipad in his role as a medical director of the pediatric intensive care transport team at the Stollery Children's Hospital.

Allan de Caen poses on the helipad in his role as a medical director of the pediatric intensive care transport team at the Stollery Children's Hospital. Click on the photo to learn more.


The Stollery Children’s Hospital Pediatric Critical Care  admits approximately 1,300 children (neonates to age 17) annually. Critically ill children are seen in two separate ICU environments: Pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (PCICU) which admits patients with medical and surgical heart disease and Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) which admits all other critically ill patients with medical and surgical diagnoses.

PCICU is located on the sixth floor of the Mazankowski Heart Institute and has 16 beds staffed with eight pediatric cardiac intensivists. The PICU also has 16 beds and is staffed with eight pediatric intensivists. Both units have recently moved into brand new spaces with individual rooms for each patient. Phase III of the PICU renovation is currently underway. 

The PICU serves as a major pediatric trauma centre for Northern Alberta, as well as the referral centre for solid-organ transplants in Western Canada. It has a busy transport service, coordinating over 200 transports a year of patients from all over Northern Alberta and the territories.

As the referral centre for the Western Canadian Heart Network, the Stollery Children's Hospital performs approximately 450 open-heart surgeries per year, making it the second busiest congenital heart surgery program in Canada. The PCICU has an extensive VAD program using both short-term and long-term devices. Both the PICU and PCICU have active cardiac and pulmonary ECLS programs (the second largest in Canada).

The Pediatric Critical Care program at the University of Alberta offers a Royal College accredited program in Pediatric Critical Care Medicine, as well as clinical fellowships in Pediatric Critical Care, Pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Medicine and Pulmonary Hypertension.

Doctors, nurses, nurse practitioners, respiratory therapists, pharmacists, social workers, occupational therapists/physiotherapists and dietitians work together with families as a team to provide care for the unit’s young patients. We strive to provide the best possible care for critically ill pediatric patients and their families.