Hospital Happenings for May

As a community partner with the UVM Children’s Hospital, Vermont Family Network would like to share with you some events and news happening at the hospital. VFN believes in the Patient and Family-Centered care model, and we proudly celebrate our partnership with UVM Children’s Hospital. Feel free to send us questions or suggestions you may have regarding Hospital Happenings.

Events: Community Health Improvement at the UVM Medical Center offers a variety of free educational classes throughout the year. There are several HealthSource classes still available this spring.

National Nurses Week May 6-12: National Nurses Week begins May 6th. To celebrate there is a screening of Defining Hope, taking place at the Main Street Landing at 3:30 on the 6th; this documentary focuses on end-of-life care and the nurses that guide patients with life-threatening illnesses. Seating is limited RSVP to [email protected]. Wednesday May 9th, is National School Nurse Day, check out the link to see the many contributions of school nurses. Nurses Week ends on May 12th, which is Florence Nightingale’s birthday, who is the founder of modern nursing. Consider honoring a nurse that you and your family have worked with, a thank you note, or some kinds words may brighten their day!

Pediatric News: The Spina Bifida Collaborative Care Program is a special multidisciplinary clinic at UVM Children’s Hospital.  The clinic was designed with input from the Director of Patient & Family Experience with the goal of providing coordinated, Patient and Family-Centered Care. A coordinated visit, allows families to see all of their child’s specialists in one visit, eliminating multiple trips to the hospital. The clinic includes Pediatric Nephrology, Pediatric Urology, Pediatric Neurosurgery, Pediatric Gastrointestinal, Pediatric Physiatry, Pediatric Orthopedics, Child Life, Social Work, and a Certified Prosthetist & Orthotist.  On clinic days, which occur once a month, children and their families are invited to the family lunch, hosted by Vermont Family Network and the Director of Patient & Family Experience. Child Life is also present to involve children in activities while families meet.  Feedback from patients, families and care team members continues to shape and evolve this clinic.

Volunteer Opportunities: UVM Medical Center has over 20 volunteer opportunities; many of which are working with children and families. If you are interested in getting involved, check out this list.

Vermont Family Network is part of the national Parent to Parent organization. We match families with a similar diagnosis or disability. A parent match can be extremely valuable and important for families that are just learning about their child’s diagnosis, as often times caregivers can experience a variety of difficult emotions. Families have found it helpful to talk with another parent that has “been there and done that” as it is an opportunity to talk about experiences and share resources. Each match is made based on a parent’s self-identified needs. If you are interested in volunteering as a Support Parent or if you would like to be matched with another parent please contact Vermont Family Network. Learn more about our Parent Match program by watching our Parent Match Program Video (22 minutes)

VFN would love to hear stories from families who have been assisted by us in advocating for their child, or navigating health systems. Please contact Jamie Rainville [email protected] if you would like to share your story or are interested in a template to help you write your story.  If you are interested in an opportunity to contribute to other families’ experiences at UVM Children’s Hospital, and would like to know more about the Patient and Family-Centered Care Program, and perhaps become a Patient/Family Advisor, please contact Charlotte Safran [email protected] .

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