A good distraction has proven benefits in calming children who are preparing to go into surgery, and today, Pittsburgh-based American Textile Company announced a donation of $300,000 to Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation to help complete the distraction therapy rooms at the Same-Day Surgery Center at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC.
The Same-Day Surgery Center at Children’s is an ambulatory facility designed for the care of children admitted for surgical and diagnostic procedures that require general anesthesia or narcotic sedation. The center also prepares children and their families for procedures that may require an overnight stay in the hospital. Children’s Hospital has been a leader in using distraction therapy to prevent patient anxiety and reduce the need for sedation, which ultimately improves patient care and safety, and reduces wait times for children in need of important health and medical procedures.
This donation will help Children’s to expand distraction therapy in the center and to design and stage several of the Same Day Surgery pre-operative rooms with distracting activities and images that serve to divert a child’s attention from the clinical nature of his or her visit. Designs will range from underwater adventures to tree-houses.
“When you walk into one of these rooms, you can’t help but feel transported into a place other than a hospital room,” said Natalie McLane, unit director, Same-Day Surgery Center at Children’s. “It means so much to patients of all ages and is such a welcome distraction for them and their families. This donation will complete all of the rooms in the center which will allow every patient to feel less afraid and more at ease before their surgical procedure.”
Patients like Nicholas Joblon, age 4, and his family are able to have a better surgical experience because of Children’s Hospital’s commitment to family-centered care and innovations such as distraction therapy.
“Nicholas’s first surgery experience was very overwhelming and we prepared ourselves by watching videos that the hospital provided us, but for Nicholas that wasn’t enough,” said Kristen Joblon, Nicholas’s mother. “We knew we needed to do something different before his next surgery date. The Child Life Department and his nurses worked with Nicholas and his individual interests over the next few months and turned an extremely anxious child into a very well prepared and confident boy who smiled on his way into surgery.”
“We are honored to partner with Children’s Hospital to ensure that kids from across this region in need of medical care have the benefit of distraction therapy and can possibly be made to be more comfortable during a trying time,” said Lance Ruttenberg, president, and CEO of American Textile. “The business and philanthropic focus of our company is to ensure comfort, so the distraction therapy program at Children’s Hospital is an ideal fit for us.”