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Cooper University Health Care Critical Care Team Earns National Honor


(Camden, NJ) – The Center for Critical Care Medicine at Cooper University Health Care has received national recognition for its outstanding extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) program, an advanced lifesaving system used for critically ill patients. The Cooper team was named a Silver Level Center on the Path to Excellence in Life Support program by the Extracorporeal Life Support Organization (ELSO). 


The Excellence in Life Support Award recognizes centers that demonstrate an exceptional commitment to evidence-based processes and quality measures, staff training and continuing education, patient satisfaction, and ongoing clinical care. The award also recognizes and honors extracorporeal life support (ECLS) programs that reach the highest level of performance, innovation, satisfaction, and quality.


“We are honored to be the recipient of such a prestigious award. We were able to help countless patients due to the vision of our administration and the tireless efforts our physicians, nurses, perfusionists, and respiratory therapists. Dr. Emily Damuth and Rob Rios, BSRN, RRT, CCPLP, deserve special recognition for this achievement as they kept the database about our patients, which helped us adjust our practices to improve care,” said Nitin K. Puri, MD, division head of Critical Care Medicine at Cooper. “The ECMO Center accomplishments reflect the dedication to advancing health care that we continuously strive to achieve at Cooper, not only for southern New Jersey, but the world.”


Cooper provides ECMO for support of failing organ systems in adults. ECMO is one of the most advanced forms of life support available to patients experiencing acute failure of the cardiac and respiratory systems. ECMO allows time for the patient’s lungs or heart to heal by using a heart-lung machine to oxygenate the blood outside the body.


Cooper was among the first hospitals in nation to use ECMO extensively to treat many critically ill COVID-19 patients throughout the pandemic. The treatment saved the lives of dozens of patient who would have died without the treatment. Based on their experiences in treating COVID patients with ECMO, Cooper’s Critical Care team served in an advisory capacity for hospitals around the nation and the world. 


About Cooper University Health Care’s Center for Critical Care Medicine

The Center for Critical Care Medicine provides the highest level of lifesaving inpatient care for the seriously ill and injured. The Center is staffed by physician experts in sepsis, cardiogenic shock, and respiratory failure, and is a major referral resource for area hospitals.


About Extracorporeal Life Support Organization (ELSO)


The Extracorporeal Life Support Organization (ELSO) is an international non-profit consortium of health care centers and individuals who are dedicated to the development, evaluation and improvement of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) and other innovative therapies for support of failing organ systems in the neonate, child and adult. ELSO is made up of a broad multidisciplinary collaboration of physicians, nurses, perfusionists, respiratory therapists, technicians, researchers, and industry experts. Global chapters of ELSO provide education and expertise in ECMO delivery around the world.