The Immunology Clinic provides specialized care for children and youth in the Maritimes who need immunology care and follow up. Our focus is on assessing possible immune deficiency as well as complex or early-onset autoimmune diseases, and complex inflammatory or auto-inflammatory diseases.
How we help
The Immunology Clinic provides primary, secondary, and tertiary care and follow-up for children and youth with a wide range immune deficiencies and related autoimmune and inflammatory conditions. Care is provided in both an inpatient and outpatient setting depending on the patient’s management requirements. Children who require hospitalization will stay on the Pediatric Medical Unit (7 North) or on the Hematology Oncology Unit (6 Link). A referral to Immunology clinic is made by a health care provider, usually family doctor, pediatrician or other specialist.
While in the Immunology Clinic your child’s care may be provided by a resident (a doctor specializing in immunology), or nurse, all under the guidance of the immunology physician. Each child is examined and assessed on an individual basis and after discussion with a parent/guardian, a personalized plan of care is developed. Other health professionals will be consulted as necessary. Your child’s visit may include, or be followed by, blood work or vaccinations. The Immunology clinic is a very busy clinic ,so plan to be at the clinic for 1-2 hours.
What to expect
You’ll be notified of your child’s appointment by mail and/or phone call. Before your appointment, it may be helpful to write down any questions you may have. Follow-up care, if required, will be reviewed prior to leaving. The booking clerk will notify you of follow up appointments by mail and/or phone call.
To fully prepare for your child’s visit, please be sure to bring along:
- your child's health card
- your appointment letter
- a List of medications
- any medications needed during your visit
- Your child’s vaccination record.
- books, games, snacks (peanut free), diapers, change of baby clothes, or other necessities.
Who you will Meet
Our team is made up of many members who work closely together. Some of the people you may meet during your visit include the following caring and professional people.
There are three immunology physicians who work in the Immunology Clinic. They’re physicians responsible for assessing, examining, diagnosing and treating any problems with your child’s immune system or excluding any significant concerns about your child’s immune system. They will see your child in follow-up appointments as needed. You'll also meet residents or fellows (doctors who are training to become family doctors, pediatricians or immunology/allergy physicians), who work under the guidance of our physicians.
Dr. T. Issekutz
Dr. B. Derfalvi
Dr. A. Palma
The registered nurses in the Immunology Clinic have a high level of knowledge, skill and competence in the area of pediatric immunology. They'll help answer any questions you might have about your child’s immunology condition, and will help guide you through whatever treatment option is necessary.
Booking clerks book clinic appointments and coordinate booking of special tests as needed.
Registration clerks register your child for their appointment when they arrive at the immunology clinic.
Child Life Specialists
Health care experiences can be stressful for children and youth. These experiences may cause fear, confusion and changes in behaviour. With the help of Child Life staff, children and youth can master these feelings through play, education and support. Child Life specialists have special training designed to promote the wellbeing of children and youth and their families by assisting them to cope with the stresses of health care through play, education, and other strategies. A child life specialist would be consulted as needed.
Social workers are dedicated to improving the physical health, mental health, and wellbeing of patients and families by working on the issues that patients and families identify as concerns. They have special training (Masters Degree) in the areas of medical and mental health social work practice. All social workers at the IWK are required to be registered through the Nova Scotia Association of Social Workers (NSASW). A social worker would be consulted as needed.
Dietitians at the IWK are nutrition professionals who have training and experience in the area of nutrition for infants and children. The Dietitian can assess your child’s growth and nutrition, and help create an individualized plan that meets the nutritional needs of your child. A dietician would be consulted as needed.
In the Pediatric Health Psychology Service, Psychologists work with children and adolescents with acute and chronic medical difficulties. The Psychologist can help your child cope with aspects of the assessment or treatment of illness. Examples include preparing for medical procedures or examinations, taking medication, and adhering to complex daily regimens. As well, they help to support youth regarding broader aspects of coping with illness, such as managing symptoms and coping with limitations related to a medical condition. A psychologist would be consulted as needed. Find more information about the Pediatric Health Psychology Service here.