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A place where teenagers can be themselves


A snowstorm couldn’t stop the celebration Nov. 15, when hospital leaders, physicians and members of the community officially opened Yale New Haven Children’s Hospital's Lauren Telesz/Smilow Teen Center on the South Pavilion seventh floor. Telesz, a Yale University student, successfully battled Stage IV Hodgkin lymphoma at YNHCH while in high school. Intensive treatment and support from her care team and loved ones helped her beat cancer, but she saw a need for services targeted to people her age. The center serves teens and young adults, offering them a place to socialize with one another, friends and family. It also includes video games, tablets and a big screen for movies.

The center supports the services of YNHCH’s Adolescent and Young Adult (AYA) Oncology Program, which provides specialized treatment and services for youths 13 and older. Cutting the ribbon for the new center were (l-r): Gary Kupfer, MD, chief of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology; Cynthia Sparer, senior vice president, Operations, and executive director, YNHCH; Lauren Telesz; Asher Marks, MD, director, Pediatric Neuro-Oncology; Clifford Bogue, MD, chief medical officer, YNHCH; Amanda Garbatini, adolescent and young adult coordinator, YNHCH; Connie Nicolosi, LCSW, Social Work manager, YNHCH; and Ellen Good, manager, Child Life Program, YNHCH.