May 12, 2017

Boston Children's Hospital May 2017 Report

BCH Clowns & Marathon Runners
BCH Clowns & Marathon Runners

Boston Children's Hospital May 2017 Report: Springing into Updates!

Broken bones to fragile hearts, stubborn tumors to elusive disease. Boston Children’s Hospital has one mission: To offer unconditional care to every child who needs us. Your gift helps us do what we do best. Heal children. Support families. And save lives, today and tomorrow, until every child is well.

In order to accomplish our mission, we must understand who are our patients are. Boston Children’s average patient age is just eight years old. Last year 88% of patients were under 18 including 51% females and 49% males. Lastly, our families average inpatient length of stay on our campus was 7.76 days.

During these long visits, it is important to provide a positive experience to the patients and their families. Support from donors like you helped the hospital expand child life services into new clinics and continue existing impactful programs that benefit the family holistically like our Clown Care Unit.

Child Life Specialist play an integral part of the team at Boston Children’s, they are responsible for daily programming in the activity rooms and individual sessions with patients at their bedsides and floor-wide programs on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. Some cost that are associated with Child Life activities include:   $25,000 annually for balloons, $15,000 annually for crayons, and $10,000 annually for stickers, pinwheels & bubbles.

Weekend child life specialists include our six full-time weekend inpatient child life specialists who cover a total of nearly 400 beds, providing much-needed enrichment, distraction and good old-fashioned fun during a previously slow time of the week. These child life specialists plan and run hospital-wide events in the Patient Entertainment Center; events feature crafts, giveaways, games, music and fun! In the past year, a total of more than 300 patients and family members have attended parties celebrating Halloween, a viewing of the movie Polar Express, the Super Bowl and Valentine’s Day.

The Big Apple Circle Clown Care Unit has been a part of Boston Children’s since 1995, the Big Apple Circus Clown “doctors” use music, magic, juggling and a variety of performance skills – their customized brand of medical humor – at bedsides, in activity rooms and in outpatient clinics. Our nine clowns interact with up to 80 patients and encounter more than 200 family members and staff each day!

Boston Children’s Hospital is committed to caring for the whole child, not just his or her disease or injury. Child Life Services, while essential, are not reimbursable and are thus among the most difficult to sustainably fund. We are deeply grateful for your compassion and vision in supporting our work and for helping children and their families transcend the difficulties of hospitalization.

Feb 13, 2017

Boston Children's Hospital February Report 2017

BCH Music Therapy
BCH Music Therapy

February 2017: New Year of Changes

Thank you for your generous support of the Children’s Fund at Boston Children’s Hospital.

Over the past year demand for child life services has skyrocketed. It would have been impossible to meet our young patients’ needs without your dedicated support. Thank you for your compassion and kindness, which allows Child Life to engage, enrich, empower and heal families.

SIMPeds Child Life Specialist: New to Boston Children’s Hospital we have a child life specialist working in the hospital’s Pediatric Simulator Program. SIMPeds covers a host of activities, including the simulation of patient-to-hospital interactions, medical events, procedures, home care follow-up and more. In a room that can be arranged to simulate a child’s nursery, the dedicated child life specialist works with clinicians and families to help parents learn procedures such as inserting, removing or cleaning a tracheostomy tube. Community children and their families are also invited to participate in medical play, including working with an “X-ray machine” and other equipment.

Autism Child Life Specialist: Working exclusively in the Autism Spectrum Center, this child life specialist promotes the Autism Friendly Hospital Initiative of Boston Children’s Hospital by supporting patients with autism and their families throughout the hospital experience. Being at the hospital can present many challenges for patients with autism, including difficulties waiting, heightened sensory experiences and the unpredictability of the medical environment. The child life specialist supports each patient’s unique needs in a variety of family-centered approaches.

My Music Rx: The hospital has recently partnered with My Music Rx, a program of the Children’s Cancer Association, to send volunteer musicians strolling through the main hospital and other locations. The volunteers have been pushing a colorful rolling cart packed with guitars, ukuleles, hand drums and other melody makers. These roving balladeers are enchanting and engaging children and their families with nursery rhymes, lullabies and more. Right now the students dot the Emergency Department, Oncology and Surgery units and Teen Resource Rooms, as well as the Martha Eliot Health Center in Jamaica Plain.

A child arrives at Boston Children’s Hospital not just with a physical illness or injury, but with a rich history and inner life. Thanks to you, we are able to nurture each child not only physically, but emotionally and spiritually as well.

Nov 16, 2016

Boston Children's Hospital November 2016

Holidays at BCH
Holidays at BCH

Family Services: Holidays

Thank you for your generous support of the Children’s Fund at Boston Children’s Hospital.

The Children’s Fund supports the many priorities and innovative programs in patient care,teaching/medical training, research and community health for children from low income families and communities. Your philanthropy will greatly impact on patients and their families in need during the holiday season. Many families struggle financially and are unable to provide holiday gifts, winter clothing and holiday meals for their children. Here at Boston Children’s we are able to provide support and resources through different programs.

The Hale Family Center for Families has a clothing closet for patients and families who travel to the hospital emergently and find themselves in need of a change of clothing. Toy drop offs are popular throughout the holiday season where donations come in from companies, families and individuals. Donations range from books, toys, gift cards and more to provide gifts to patients whose family cannot afford them and those who will be staying in the hospital throughout the holiday season.

Hosted by the Family Services team, the annual Boston Children's Holiday Craft Fair event kicks-off the season for the entire hospital community. Patients, family members, staff and visitors can browse the assortment of unique handmade gifts including candles, quilts, stained glass, jewelry, holiday decorations, greeting cards and much more from New England vendors.

The New Year will mark the one year anniversary of the Family Services team moving to the hospital’s main lobby, the Hale Family Center for Families. The program supported by philanthropy continues to grow. Rooms for family meetings, an activity space and a relaxation area have provided families the space to relax and care for themselves during their time at the hospital. Throughout the year the Family Services team has worked hard to ensure that families feel comfortable, confident, inspired, valued and supported throughout their entire Boston Children's experience. 

We are deeply grateful for your compassion and vision in supporting the Children’s Fund and for helping children and their families especially through the holiday season.

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