UnityPoint Health® – Blank Children’s Hospital and University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital have collaborated on providing full-time pediatric nephrology (kidney) care in Des Moines, leaders from both hospitals announced Oct. 8. Aura Arenas Morales, MD, began seeing patients at Blank Children’s Hospital on Sept. 4. 

The addition of Arenas Morales, a pediatric nephrologist and clinical assistant professor in the UI Stead Family Department of Pediatrics, to the team at Blank Children’s Hospital brings a needed pediatric specialty to central Iowa, says Steve Stephenson, MD, president and chief operating officer at Blank Children’s Hospital.

Arenas Morales comes to Blank Children’s through a collaboration with UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital. Both organizations say they are committed to providing a comprehensive, statewide system of care for the children of Iowa.

“Providing outstanding pediatric specialty care for Iowa’s children is a priority for both our organizations,” says Stephenson. “We are able to work together in a way that does not duplicate services but instead provides access to the care and services families need where they need it.”

“We are committed to providing a comprehensive, statewide system of care for the children of Iowa,” says Raphael Hirsch, MD, physician-in-chief of UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital and chair of the UI Stead Family Department of Pediatrics. “Our pediatric nephrology program is ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one the best such programs in the nation. Offering pediatric nephrology services at Blank Children’s Hospital will provide more convenient access for families in central Iowa, especially those from surrounding communities and rural areas. We look forward to working with Blank Children’s Hospital to provide the best care for children and families.”

Arenas Morales came to Des Moines after completing a pediatric nephrology fellowship at Holtz Children’s Hospital at the University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Health Center in Miami, Florida. Prior to her fellowship, she completed a pediatrics residency at St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital in Paterson, New Jersey. She earned a medical degree at the Juan N. Corpas School of Medicine in Bogota, Colombia, and has worked as an emergency room/trauma physician and neonatologist at health systems in Colombia.

To schedule a pediatric nephrology appointment at Blank Children’s Hospital, please call 515-241-6431 or visit blankchildrens.org.

Learn more about nephrology services at UI Stead Family Children’s Hospital.