Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia President and CEO Releases New Podcast Season

When patients and families walk through the doors of Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), they may not realize that their story could lead to future breakthroughs for other families. In “The Breakthrough Chronicles,” the latest five-episode series of the popular podcast Breaking Through with Madeline Bell, CHOP President and CEO Madeline Bell speaks with CHOP patients and their families about their inspiring stories – and about how the breakthroughs CHOP teams are making today will help children in the future.

From children who received life-changing gene therapy treatments and heart transplants to a family who navigated a medical mystery, the series gives listeners a glimpse into what makes CHOP so special.

“Emily’s Story: Celebrating 10 Years Cancer Free”

Emily was just 6 years old when she received CAR T-cell immunotherapy for relapsed leukemia at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Emily was the very first child to receive this groundbreaking treatment – and in 2022, she celebrated 10 years cancer free. In this episode of “The Breakthrough Chronicles,” Emily and her father, Tom, speak with Madeline about what it’s like to be part of a medical breakthrough – and share what Emily’s life is like today.

“Hannah’s Story: Moving Beyond Blindness”

When Hannah was a baby, she was diagnosed with a rare eye disease that usually leaves patients completely blind. But Hannah’s story turned out differently thanks to an incredible gene therapy developed at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and Penn Medicine. In this episode of “The Breakthrough Chronicles,” 11-year-old Hannah and her mom, Amy, share their family’s inspiring story with Madeline – and talk about the impact this breakthrough treatment made on Hannah.

“Kareem’s Story: Advocating for Trauma-Informed Care”

While growing up in West Philadelphia, Kareem saw firsthand the devastating impact trauma and violence can have on children. In this episode of “The Breakthrough Chronicles,” he and Madeline discuss the sport that changed his life – and the role that hospitals like Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia have to play in helping children cope.

“Tenlee’s Story: Thriving After a Heart Transplant”

Tenlee was born with a rare heart condition and had a heart transplant at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia when she was only 5 months old. Although she is doing well today, her journey has been very challenging. In this episode of “The Breakthrough Chronicles,” Tenlee’s parents, Jami and Nick, speak with Madeline about the challenges Tenlee has overcome and share their family’s experience at CHOP.

“Elijah’s Story: Navigating a Medical Mystery”

From the time Elijah was a baby, he had many painful symptoms – and no one could determine what was wrong. But when Elijah was a toddler, his family finally found answers at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. In this episode of “The Breakthrough Chronicles,” 12-year-old Elijah and his parents talk to Madeline about how teams at CHOP transformed his health – and his life.

“The Breakthrough Chronicles” is the latest season of Madeline Bell’s podcast, Breaking Through, which takes listeners on the inspirational and fascinating journeys of past and present CHOP patients, employees and partners. Since Breaking Through’s release in 2018, it has featured a range of experts, including Stephan Grupp, MD, PhD, the oncologist who pioneered CAR T-cell immunotherapy for cancer at CHOP, Holly Hedrick, MD, a surgeon who has separated several sets of conjoined twins at CHOP, and Sue Furth, MD, PhD, CHOP’s first female Chief Scientific Officer. Each of the 38 episodes explores the visionary innovation that is driving cutting-edge clinical care at CHOP – and the role philanthropy plays in this important work.

About Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

A non-profit, charitable organization, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia was founded in 1855 as the nation’s first pediatric hospital. Through its long-standing commitment to providing exceptional patient care, training new generations of pediatric healthcare professionals, and pioneering major research initiatives, the 595-bed hospital has fostered many discoveries that have benefited children worldwide. Its pediatric research program is among the largest in the country. The institution has a well-established history of providing advanced pediatric care close to home through its CHOP Care Network, which includes more than 50 primary care practices, specialty care and surgical centers, urgent care centers, and community hospital alliances throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey, as well as a new inpatient hospital with a dedicated pediatric emergency department in King of Prussia. In addition, its unique family-centered care and public service programs have brought Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia recognition as a leading advocate for children and adolescents. For more information, visit


Written by Shantel

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