Regional Fetal Evaluation Center

A place you can expect exceptional family-centered care

Helping expectant parents stay informed and connected is why we’re here and what we do. We know this can be an uncertain time for you and your family. Giving you the right tools and information is the best way we can provide exceptional care for mother and baby.

Our Regional Fetal Evaluation Center (RFEC) is a comprehensive center that provides expertise in:

  • Prenatal diagnosis
  • Consultations with pediatric sub-specialty physicians
  • Reproductive genetics 

What We Do That Makes Us Special

We connect expectant mothers with the resources and specialized care for their unborn child. We have a unique team approach where obstetricians and maternal fetal medicine providers (MFMs) from the community work alongside pediatric subspecialists at St. Christopher’s to provide individualized comprehensive care for expectant mothers and their families. This collaboration allows for obstetricians and MFMs to remain an essential part of mother and baby’s care. It also ensures that their postnatal medical management is coordinated with appropriate pediatric subspecialists.

St. Christopher’s is a leader in pediatric care since 1875. Our nationally-recognized programs and pediatric specialists provide exceptional care to children from the greater Philadelphia area and around the world. Through affiliations with Drexel University College of Medicine and Temple University School of Medicine, St. Christopher’s is a premier academic medical center that helps train the next generation of pediatricians and pediatric surgeons.

What We Offer

Our faculty of over 220 pediatric specialists combines expert general pediatric care with more than 30 different pediatric subspecialty areas. The specialties most frequently consulted by the RFEC include:

  • Cardiology/Fetal Echocardiogram
  • Cardiothoracic Surgery
  • Genetic Counseling
  • Neonatology
  • Neurology
  • Neurosurgery, including a Spina Bifida Team
  • Orthopedic Surgery
  • Palliative Care Services
  • Pediatric Surgery
  • Plastic Surgery, including a Cleft Palate Team
  • Radiology
  • Urology

To meet your baby’s particular needs, we provide many more specialists as well as onsite fetal echocardiogram and fetal MRI services.

We have the highest level of neonatal care with advanced capabilities including cranial cooling and extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), one of the most advanced forms of life support available to patients experiencing acute failure of the cardio-respiratory system. 

Referrals

A mother is referred to the RFEC by her primary care physician, obstetrician, or MFM. If you are pregnant and require a perinatologist, we can provide you with a list of RFEC-participating providers and arrange for an appointment.   

Your Initial Visit

The nurse coordinator is your guide for the day. She or he will escort and remain with you and your family throughout your visit to St. Christopher’s and provide you with a tour of our facility. At your request, we can arrange for you to meet with one of our certified breastfeeding consultants and/or tour the Ronald McDonald House.

The Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House is located next to the hospital. Ronald McDonald Houses provide lodging, comfort, and support to families who travel 25 miles or more for medical treatment. Although families are asked to pay a nominal fee, no family is ever turned away due to an inability to pay. Click here or call (215) 291-0907 for more information. 

The Follow-Up Plan

After your initial visit, the nurse coordinator will:

  • Remain in contact with your providers throughout the pregnancy
  • Arrange for additional services as needed
  • Monitor estimated delivery dates and birth plans
  • Communicate with transport, neonatology, nicu/ccu, and specialty teams
  • Facilitate immediate transfer of the baby when necessary
  • Communicate with referring centers after delivery

Personalized Service

Your baby is unique and special to your family and so is the service we provide. We know the anxiety parents-to-be may be feeling, so we schedule appointments within 24 to 48 hours after initial contact. Multiple consultations and diagnostic studies are designed to take place in one day. Our nurse coordinator will collaborate with your provider to schedule appointments for your family with our team of specialists in order to put together a care plan tailored to your baby’s specific clinical needs.

Support Beyond Pregnancy

If your baby’s needs require that he or she spend some time with us, we want you to know the staff at St. Christopher’s is here for you and your baby.

Our hospital social workers care for every family and are your point of contact for any non-medical questions or concerns. Our Child Life program supports the siblings in the family by using age appropriate play therapy and games to help them gain a better understanding of why the baby may need to be in the hospital. As a breastfeeding-friendly hospital, we offer certified breastfeeding consultants around the clock.

How To Contact Us

For more information on the services we offer or to refer a patient to The Regional Fetal Evaluation Center, please contact a St. Christopher’s nurse coordinator by:

  • Phone: (888) 546-6402 or (215) 427-5521.
  • Fax: Complete and fax a referral form, along with all necessary medical records to (215) 427-5567.

A nurse will promptly contact you to coordinate services.