Internationally Renowned Physicians Appointed to Lead Arizona Mother-Baby Care

In a move that will improve patient care and outcomes in normal and high-risk pregnancies, Arizona Care Network (ACN) and Phoenix Children’s Care Network (PCCN) announced that John Elliott, MD, (left, with parents of St. Joseph's first set of quintuplets) and Kathleen van Leeuwen, MD, will lead Arizona Mother-Baby Care, a network  that provides women and infants with access to top physicians and coordinated services throughout pregnancy and after delivery. 

Dr. Elliott, medical director of Arizona Mother-Baby Care, and Dr. van Leeuwen, the network’s surgical director, are recognized among the world’s top physicians in their respective fields. 
“These physicians are the dream team for mothers and infants,” said David Hanekom, MD, chief executive officer of ACN, the Accountable Care Organization of Dignity Health Arizona and Abrazo Community Health Network with affiliates Phoenix Children’s Hospital and Maricopa Medical Center. “Beyond their significant medical expertise, they are passionate about their work and are powerful advocates for their patients.” 

Dr. Elliott, an internationally recognized authority in maternal-fetal medicine, specializes in the care of high-risk mothers. Recognized among the nation’s top one percent of perinatologists by U.S. News & World Report, he has built a reputation for multiple-birth pregnancies and has delivered more quintuplets than any other doctor in the world. He has safely delivered two sets of sextuplets, 23 sets of quintuplets, 108 sets of quadruplets and more than 700 sets of triplets, and has worked with mothers around the world who come to Phoenix to be in his care. He is board-certified in obstetrics and gynecology and in maternal-fetal medicine.

In his role as medical director, Dr. Elliott will coordinate obstetrical care for pregnant mothers  emphasizing evidence based “ best care” guidelines that will be implemented by some of Arizona’s best obstetricians and high risk pregnancy specialists. Arizona Mother-Baby Care will provide concierge service to help each mother in the program to achieve the best possible outcome for their pregnancy. He also is responsible for coordinating services across the network to provide a streamlined experience for patients.

“Dr. Elliott’s medical experience, instincts, determination, and unwavering commitment to his patients are key to his success, but he also is an adept leader and mentor,” said Dr. Hanekom. “He is heading up a network of clinicians who are excellent in their own right, but he has the unique ability to unify them around the network’s goals and leverage their expertise to benefit all of the mothers and babies in our care.” 

Held in same high regard, Dr. van Leeuwen is a highly respected specialist and a staunch advocate for pregnant women whose babies are diagnosed with a medical condition in utero. She founded and serves as medical director of Arizona Fetal Care Network at Phoenix Children’s Hospital. Now available through Arizona Mother-Baby Care, the program pairs mothers with care coordinators who help them schedule specialist consultations, ensure they understand diagnoses and treatment options, and provide ongoing support throughout pregnancy and after birth. She gained distinction in pediatric surgery when she performed the world’s first thoracoscopic repair of a congenital diaphragmatic hernia, a defect in the muscle that divides the chest from the abdomen, allowing the intestines to push on the lungs. The condition can be life-threatening after delivery, but she successfully repaired the hole in the infant’s diaphragm. 

“Dr. van Leeuwen has found her purpose in helping pregnant mothers facing devastating fetal diagnoses,” said Robert L. Meyer, President and CEO of Phoenix Children’s Hospital. “She and her team built a program that provides an unprecedented level of support, helping parents navigate the medical system while also calming their fears and preparing them for what’s ahead.”

In her role as surgical director, Dr. van Leeuwen will work to scale this concierge-style service across Arizona Mother-Baby Care. She also will oversee the network’s team of surgeons in the treatment of high-risk mothers and their babies, and will ensure the smooth transition of newborns to pediatric subspecialists when needed. She is regularly named one of Phoenix Magazine’s Top Doctors, and has been featured among the Best Doctors in America since 2007. She is board-certified by the American College of Surgeons and in pediatric surgery.

About Arizona Mother-Baby Care

Arizona Mother-Baby Care combines the unique expertise of Arizona Care Network and Phoenix Children’s Care Network to provide exceptional services for mother and baby. Services range from pre-conception care through pregnancy, birth, and early childhood. The network brings together obstetricians, pediatricians and partnering health systems, utilizing evidence-based treatment protocols to ensure a superior patient experience and quality outcomes focusing on a reduction in preterm delivery. For more information about Arizona Mother-Baby Care, visit

About Arizona Care Network

Arizona Care Network is a physician-led and governed accountable care organization, with more than 5,000 clinicians providing a broad range of clinical and care coordination services for adult and pediatric patients in Maricopa and Pinal counties. ACN is a partnership between Dignity Health Arizona and Abrazo Community Health Network, and is affiliated with Phoenix Children’s Hospital, one of the largest children’s hospitals in the nation, and Maricopa Medical Center, part of Maricopa Integrated Health System. The network is comprised of primary care and specialty physicians, along with skilled nursing and home health agencies, imaging centers, retail clinics, urgent care and emergency centers, two children’s hospitals, and 14 acute care and specialty hospitals. For more information, visit