How Children’s Hospital Colorado has changed our lives

By Christina King

Wednesday, Oct 12 2016

Dominic

Children’s Hospital Colorado is simply a second home for our family. I mean this in a very positive way.

Our family came to Colorado when our son, Dominic, was almost 3 years old; he is now 17. He was diagnosed with cerebral palsy when he was 8 months old when we were living in Arizona.

When we moved to Colorado, we had to navigate all of his care by ourselves. I spent the first two weeks in Colorado trying to get services, health care, benefits and any information I could to help Dominic. I had 10 pages of notes and had gotten nowhere. I was frustrated and feeling at the end of my rope, when I remembered someone in Arizona telling me that there was a wonderful children’s hospital in Colorado that could probably help us.

I looked it up and found a nurse line for Children’s Hospital Colorado. I called the number and found a wonderful nurse who helped to connect Dominic to all the services he needed. I can’t thank this nurse enough for completely turning things around for me and connecting me to a place that has become so important to my family.

She started by getting us in touch with a pediatrician. From there, we were connected with physical, occupational and speech therapists, and all sorts of specialists at Children’s Colorado: a neurologist, neurosurgeon, orthopedic surgeon and rehab doctor. When it came time to go to the dentist, I thought we would just find a dentist close to home. No, Dominic insisted on going to Children’s Colorado for this. The same thing happened when we needed an eye doctor.

Dominic is so comfortable at Children’s Hospital Colorado that we can’t go anywhere else for treatment. As nurses change departments, he continues to keep in touch with them. When he is hospitalized on the inpatient floors, he remembers all his nurses and develops relationships with them. Whomever he meets, he forms a relationship with them. This is how it is at Children’s Colorado; it is a family who cares deeply about our children.

There are times I am amazed that I enjoy spending so much time at a hospital, but it has become such a part of our lives. Dominic is an ambassador for the hospital this year, I am on the Family Advisory Council, which plans numerous volunteer events for the hospital. When Dominic is having a bad day, he always mentions that he wants to go to the hospital to see some of “his people.” The hospital could be a very scary place, but for him, it is a safe place to land.

Comments

Yes! - safe place to land and home away from home. In many ways, Children's resembles a pediatric, medical "Cheers, where everybody knows your name!" The nurses, doctors, greeters, volunteers, security, housekeeping and even valets all became great friends. Mark and Eric felt safe. Dominic! Thanks for speaking on behalf of so many kiddos and how it feels to go to Children's.
Posted by Kelly Stahlman on October 20, 2016

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