George Mark Children's House

Sunday, October 29th

Sue Hall speaks with Salina Patel Director of Nursing and Melissa Heller Mgr of Donor Relations for George Mark Children's House San Leandro providing lief affirming care for children and their families.


Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

Good morning I am Soo hall and this is today's world Greek listen to this show and others at today's world SF dot com. And today's the next fifteen minutes we are speaking with Selena Patel of and I'm Melissa Heller the air with George mark children's house Lena is the director of nursing. And Melissa is the Mets manager of donor relations. So let's Selena talk about George mark children's house first felt where is it and in what is it. Thank you soups and. George mark children's house is the first free standing pediatric palliative care facility in the nation. We are located in San Leandro California. And it's it's excuse me didn't sit in San Leandro on the foothills. Up behind Fairmont hospital. We came about in 2004. Because our founders doctor Kathy hall and doctor Barbara beach. Both physicians and psychologist at Children's Hospital Oakland decided. That they have to be a better place where children can go when it's there and of life then so. Kathy Ireland Barbara did research they looked for similar places in the United States. And could not find any such thing in the United States that they brought in their research. And found similar places in England. And in Canada. So our house is actually based on Helen's house in England. It looked just like yet. And yet our doors opened in 2004. So we are licensed to take care of eight patients and families. Again we do. Palliative care which is. Providing life and affirming care for children. Who have chronic grief French medal count conditions. These children we know have a very life limiting condition and at some point will be reaching end of life. And so we provide five different types of services there. We have. What we call respite. Which is giving the parents who provide 24/7 nursing care at home a chance. To place their child somewhere where they can then go on an excuse and vacations or. He you know somebody's having surgery. So a lot of our families have never placed their child in in a facility has never had anybody else take care of the children. So this gives them an opportunity to take their other children. On trips or just the husband and wife Kindle weighs somewhere. And so that can take place from anywhere from two days after two when he Wendy's a year. And we have families that actually go to Mexico we have sons that go to India now more you're up. And really it gives the entire family to be together and not have to worry about the child that needs a special needs them and then we do what's called transitional care. So these are patients that are in the hospital. They have some new condition happened in north they have some new. You know maybe they get a trait placed aren't new GT feeding to place. And now the parents need additional teaching they've started teaching in a hospital but now the parents need to get comfortable. So they come to George marking a home like setting. And then you know that the nurses said that when he for seven Indy help the parents to get educated on taking care of their child and taking them home. We have had a child to which is the other way around this as a child or young adult to actually. That was at home with CS and two needed bilateral lung transplant is let's just not compliant. And it was not ever medically stable to get a transplant so we brought in me and we kept him there for up to six months and made him stable enough where he could going to have his lung transplants now he's almost 22 years old and doing fantastic. Straight so that is a transitional. I also it's not just from hospital to home but it's the other way around to. And then we do are you know end of life care. So that can vary from you know the timeframe on that varies depending on China to child. But we have children or young adults that we have up to six months at the house. And this is where the quality of life comes in we make legacies for these children so we hop the families. Built legacies for these dying children. So for that we have two families sweet that we can actually accommodate the family in house. So we had you know aunts uncles grandmothers siblings friends everybody can be it there's no limits on the visiting hours. We have a great program for the entire family where. You know our China life fast social worker or psychologist everybody participates and makes a planet care for the children. So we you know for that and we have had younger adults who we had one who was a diehard giants fan. And when it to eagle watch and playoff game and we made that happen. We sent him to the stadium we had to suction machines set up we had. You know those are the pain medications on board and send him with everything and he was able to go watch the giants is that if he passed away. So that's what we do for life and of life patients week to try to make a polished to quality of life and if it's a baby our young child's. We help you not how life in a social worker will work to make memory making so we do hand and foot malls. Over do you know siblings were coming in and make memory boxes for their sibling. You know at these children were in the hospital hoping in the IC news has never seen any sunshine so we bring them outside we have beautiful gardens. You know so we we make this worth for the fans. And then we'd do our BV meant in grief counseling. So ask psychologist was also a founder Kathy home and patty are social worker worked with the families. And do a lot of B bereavement support grief counseling. And the unique thing about it is as is that that's service doesn't. So that's seven stays with you. Killed the house will be. They will be there for you forever. And for that we have. You know we have fuel dates in the calendar year that we have events for these families. So for example we have what we called Tyler entails day. The families coming in this ark full life provides the tiles in the families will make a tile we have a special all. That we have the family's commitment to tighten up on and this becomes like a memorial for their child is making come back anytime they want. So we have families and we'll come there for part d.s or death anniversaries in just two of those celebration of life. Or we'll just come and sit in a gardens and wall wanna deal with anybody in that it's absolutely fine I doors opened to. And then lastly we do what is period needle counseling this is something that we have just started. So we're actually trying to recruit on children's Oakland and alternates and try to formulate appearing needing counseling so physicians will actually go out and do some counseling for families that have already received. The news that their child is going to have some kind of life limiting conditions that they go to some counseling for them well. We are talking with Selena Patel doctor I director. Nursing and George mark children's house in San Leandro. And out of this must be very emotional time for most of the people that you see. It is it is but it's also very beautiful is also very happy. In the sense that you know this is a unique place. We take we do take care of children that I dying. But we also take care of children to make sure that their quality of life is maintained. That the pass comfortably that the have you know whatever they need to take care of that child so the fan in me. Our families never CEO bill. And we take care of not just a child that is dying that we take care of their other siblings we take care of the parents. He not child's life will work with the families to make sure if they have young schooling children it to trilateral make sure their home markets transfer. We've had one who was it for six months and so we have her sibling transfer to a local school districts that she wouldn't miss out on school. You know and in so our services for the entire family. And it it is sad but it's also very rewarding it's it's something it's it's a great pleasure. Sounds crazy to say an act that we can do this for the fan. Well as as director of nurse scene it's got to be am rewarding but yet very very sad very sad how do you keep your sense of happiness. Win out we have a great support system as far as the staff goes so I have my colleagues. You know that they're nurses that I work with they're just great we have peer support we do a lot of we do our own internal grief and bereavement. We have a team meetings once a week Celine we have a child pass from the house we will I'll get together. And we were crying screaming shop and take care of ourselves you know men to do whatever we need to. But we also have our own little service that we do in on gardens afterwards we have a rock garden. So we have a gentleman that actually make these rocks for us that have the patient name on one side and the Europe at the time path and the staff get to place its rocket fountain. And we read a Pullman we talked about it. But you know might my colleagues I work with a fantastic team of nurses. And until we support each of yeah I guess you would you would have to have that internal support they have been very difficult. I we are against begin with Selena Patel director of nursing for George mark children's house and apparently this is they have very rare facility. Have any other places like this cropped up since doctor hall founded. George far so there is one other. In Phoenix but it is not a free standing on it is affiliated with adult hospice. And their eighteen such other light houses that are in progress at the moment. But this is very challenging because you know. Palliative care is new to us. But pediatric palliative care is not recognize that much. And your feeling sorry can you explain to our listener what palliative parent means so palliative care. In in my terms of use area is. Life and affirming care for children with life limiting conditions so basically it's holistic care. We just don't take chair and care of the child many cleaver we'd take care of the child spiritually cycle socially. In we take care of the entire families of the goalie is confident care. And when you are on palliative Carrey doesn't mean it's not the Siemens hospice care any people confused at two terms together. Hospice care is low end of life care that palliative care you know you can have a child and palliative care. That cost you but that is still getting other treatments for the Amy still feel gating Simoni may still be going out for radiation. Then you have your own panic ticket team that takes over and make sure that everything goes smooth for that child. Then every aspect of that tunnel discovered not just the medical and also the psychosocial. And supporting the fans and the family and as the savings yeah absolutely we have to to and that's what. We've got about five minutes left so I wanted to bring in Melissa Heller. She's the manager of donor relations and let's talk a little bit about some of your signature events and donations and how can our listeners how. So we need love and appreciate everything and anything at that community can do to help support George mark children's house. And we're very unique in the sense that our families as Selena mentioned never seen bill. And over 80% of our funding is through private donation and whether that be individuals. Corporations foundations. So we really relied very heavily on the community. The first thing that people can always do is obviously visit our website which is George mark dot org. And you can learn a lot more about the house in ways you can get involved. We have an incredibly vibrant. The volunteer program. It requires an application and it requires two days of training and then we need. Asked that people make it one year commitment to a four hour shift every week. So it's important that we have. The continuity. Of volunteer Caron the house we also couldn't exist without our volunteers. When it comes to fundraising we have our big signature event in October every year it is that George mark children's house autumn celebration. And eat is me. You know it's a great. Celebration of the house celebration of life of our supporters our volunteers and everybody which really special is we hold it at the house is. Which is incredibly unique team and how does you know 350. Supporters. Dressed in their finest there to have fun and support it worthwhile cause at the cots so we conduct two hours. During that. Our autumn celebration as well as obviously a dinner. So we are always looking for people to common support people to support us people who have greed. Live auction items that they wanted to Tony. And so all of this things our way we'll. Skip them in touch with you as George marked dot org and Ed and your name again is Melissa Heller she's the manager of donor relations. And it sounds like with some of these stories that you've just finished telling us that Salinas that the the the program wouldn't exist without. Volunteers donations. Andy's special events that you have and how do you thank I don't know who wants to address this but how would one get a hold of you with referrals and so and so forth to reach out to. Hospitals or how does one find out about your care okay so. So what we have is we we actually have a physician he is on that goes out and talks to communities up as sushi goes to other hospitals and doctors' offices specialty clinics. We spread outward that we but also. We have our own medical director and associate medical director that app out in the community at the hospitals or medical directors at CP NC's. And Lucille Packard so she brings in referrals. So if anybody has someone that qualifies they just have to call I mean number. Or visit us on the reps and get the information. Our case manager is Kathy Chong Lee and that's the person you would ask for in she will guide you as to what the next steps to should be. And and referral income from anyone's silly doesn't have to be just from a physician. It can be from you it can be from a parent it can be from a friend. Who recognizes that they have a friend that a child qualifies it can be from anybody anybody off the street can pick up the phone callers. And Kathy will. Make sure the process get tackled that's wonderful so George mark dot org and you have a phone number handy that we can get go ahead 5103464624. Is on main number of and then you can ask for either me Selena or Melissa we're happy okay great and that event website again is George. Mark dot org. Thank you so much ladies we are out of time remembering George mark children's house. Providing a very unique and very special environments for those families in need. It is in San Leandro hair Selena Patel director of nursing Melissa Heller manager of donor relations. Thanks for showing up today and and spreading the word. If you wanna hear this show again or cash shows or you have show ideas please visit us at today's world S ask. Dot com and now we'll see you our listeners next weekend.