Jul. 13, 2023 By Ethan Marshall
St. Mary’s Healthcare System for Children in Bayside celebrated the fifth anniversary of its Locomotor Training Program on Wednesday, July 12. The program is meant to improve function and reduce limitations for children with spinal cord injuries or neurological diagnoses, helping them to sit, stand and walk again.
The training program’s main goal is to help the patients make gains in trunk control, functional mobility and independent ambulation as a means of improving their quality of life. When St. Mary’s first began conducting the Locomotor Training Program in 2018, it was one of only three locomotor training facilities in all of the United States.
The training program has vastly expanded at St. Mary’s in the five years since its introduction. Up to seven patients are served daily at this point, allowing for more children to benefit from the approach in spinal cord injury rehabilitation. Patients from different states have also been served through this program at St. Mary’s.
“We are thrilled to celebrate the five year anniversary of our locomotor program, which has helped children facing spinal cord injuries and other neurological diagnoses learn to regain trunk control and functional mobility,” St. Mary’s Healthcare System for Children President and CEO Dr. Edwin Simpser said. “The incredible success of this program is a result of the unwavering dedication of the physical therapists, technicians and other staff at St. Mary’s whose tireless work ensures that these children and their families will find hope and healing through this program.”
St. Mary’s has served New York City’s children for more than 150 years. It is New York City’s only center for pediatric long-term and rehabilitative care. Kids with medically complex conditions are cared for through its in-patient hospital at 29-01 216th St. in Bayside, as well as through home care services and community programs. St. Mary’s Healthcare System is one of only a handful of organizations around the country dedicated to providing intensive rehabilitation, specialized care and education to children with special needs and life-limiting conditions.