About the Cover
Vol. 80 No. 10 (2004)
The National Center for Child Health and Development was opened in Setagaya ward, Tokyo in March 2002, as the 5th National Center of Medicine in Japan. Its mission is to contribute to the future of our society through health promotion, model practice and innovative research related to pregnancy, child birth, children, adolescents and young adults. The hardware of the hospital is unique in that a spacious atrium (left lower panel) welcomes children so that they can feel as if they were in the street or a shopping mall with their families, and medical equipment such as CT scan (left upper panel) is decorated to invite and relax pediatric patients. The software is also unique in featuring the Department of Interdisciplinary Medicine, the largest department of the center, through which the generalists see patients in a comprehensive manner in co-operation with specialists. Medicine, similar to other natural and social sciences, is moving from multidisciplinary to interdisciplinary. The research facility was just opened in October this year next to the hospital with the “Seiiku”, which means “human development”, garden in between. Faced with decreasing birth rates, high technology in medical care and various problems of children and adolescents, there are numerous challenges and exciting themes for research for our future.
Written by Hirokazu Sakai, M.D., The National Center for Child Health and Development.