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Kids are different from adults ...

and because of this they require and deserve the kind of specialized care available at Dayton Children's. Not only are children different from adults, their needs also differ from child to child. We also know they deserve a special place just for them, a place where they can get the best medical care possible, medical care designed just for them.
The journey from birth to adulthood spans 18 years, a journey of growth and development, accidents and illnesses, joys and maybe some sorrows. It's a journey we know well. And just as there are 18 years of childhood, we believe there are 18 ways we're just right for our region's kids.

Specialized care from crib to college

Our pediatric specialists are specially trained to care for children of all ages and in all stages of their growth and development, from newborns who fit in the palm of your hand to the high school linebacker, who is still growing. We offer a multispecialty and multidisciplinary approach to the care of children from birth to 18 years old and beyond in some special cases.

Our unique programs are tailored to the requirements of every child and set Dayton Children’s apart from every other hospital in the region. Our level III NICU (newborn intensive care unit) offers the highest level of specialized care in the region for the most at-risk newborns. The Comprehensive Care Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders is one of only 11 accredited pediatric cancer care programs in the nation housed in a freestanding children’s hospital. Together we share the latest protocols, research and clinical trials so a child with cancer in Dayton gets the same specialized care he or she would receive at any other top center in the country. Additionally, we perform the majority of spinal surgeries for children in the Miami Valley and house the regional centers for cystic fibrosis, hemophilia and sickle cell, as well as the region’s only pediatric sleep program and Level II pediatric trauma center.


65,982
slushies a year

One size does not fit all

Kids of all ages come through our doors every day. Many of them are experiencing health emergencies, and no two of them are exactly alike or exactly the same size. So when time is of the essence, it’s crucial to have the right equipment on hand, in the right hands.

It might seem obvious, but a baby and a teenager, even those experiencing the same health issues, require significantly different care. We maintain kid-friendly supplies to suit children of every age and size. We have everything from six sizes of diapers, five different-sized blood pressure cuffs, kid-sized syringes and specially made testing equipment. Our trauma team also has quick access to more than 50 different sizes and types of airway tubes to fit children of all ages and sizes. The right size at the right time can make a life-saving difference in an emergency.

The one constant at Dayton Children’s is the high level of quality care that each child receives while he or she is with us. Because we care only for kids, we know “one size” does not work for everyone.

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Family Matters

When kids get sick or hurt, who do they turn to first? Their families. A family’s love and support are critical to a child’s healing and recovery. That’s why at Dayton Children’s, we’re firm believers in family-centered care.

This means that we encourage parents and families to take active roles in their child’s care, placing the child at the center of that care. To us, families are not visitors, but active participants in all aspects of care and decision-making regarding their children. Parents know their children best and are in the best position to help us assess pain or discomfort, keep their child safe and alert us to changes in their child’s condition.

Because family is such an important part of the care team, we provide in-room accommodations so parents are never more than a "Mom" or "Dad" away when needed, and offer family-oriented areas throughout our facility for families to gather, decompress and support each other. We even have overnight or extended-stay accommodations at the nearby Ronald McDonald House. And, we offer extensive patient/family education programs and resources to help keep the family at the center of their child’s care. To Dayton Children’s, family truly matters.

We believe this commitment to family-centered care is one of the reasons 95 percent of parents whose children come to us for care say "they would recommend us to others."

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Extra training for exceptional professionals

Specialized pediatric care requires special training. This is why doctors who dedicate their lives to treating children often have to go to school longer than doctors who treat adults— two to three years longer on average. (A pediatric surgeon for example completes a five-year residency in general surgery and an additional two years in pediatric surgery.)

This investment of time enables them to better understand the way children respond to pain and how they express themselves. They also learn how to diagnose and treat a variety of pediatric diseases, how to deliver care specific to kids’ growing bodies and how to recognize changing levels of emotional, mental and physical maturity. They understand the importance of collaborating with all the members of the care team. This is why 100 percent of our active staff physicians are board certified or board-eligible in at least one key pediatric specialty.

Nurses and other health care professionals also have extra training in pediatric care. This includes emergency pediatric care such as PALS (Pediatric Advanced Life Support), TNCC (Trauma Nurse Core Course), and NRP (neonatal resuscitation) for nurses working in the newborn intensive care unit, and additional certifications in oncology, breastfeeding and palliative care.

From our pediatric physicians to our nurses and other health care professionals, each and every member of the Dayton Children’s team has the extra training and experience required to care for kids.

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It takes a team

Unlike other hospitals in our region, Dayton Children’s exists solely to care for kids. Because we see children with chronic and complex conditions, multidisciplinary teams are involved in the care of most patients. And, because children respond differently than adults to illnesses and injuries, it’s critical that the right specialists be available when needed.

Here are the pediatric experts who are part of our multidisciplinary care teams:

  • Pediatric specialty physicians
  • Hospitalists (doctors who oversee the care of hospitalized children)
  • Resident physicians (doctors in training)
  • Advanced practice nurses (APNs)
  • Nurses with master’s/doctorate degrees, specialized training and licensure
  • Registered nurses
  • Patient care assistants
  • Respiratory therapists
  • Child life specialists
  • Technicians
  • Physical, occupational and speech therapists
  • Audiologists
  • Pharmacists
  • Clinical dietitians
  • Patient representative
  • Medical social workers
  • Psychologists
  • Chaplains
  • Volunteers
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Right-sized medicine

No two children are exactly alike...and children are not little adults. There may be no clearer examples of the crucial differences between adult and pediatric medicine than when medications are given, medical imaging studies are done or when anesthesia is administered. Kids’ growing bodies are very sensitive, so it’s crucial that medications and other treatments be customized to meet each individual child’s specific body composition and health needs. And it’s our job to get it right.

At Dayton Children’s, we are very careful to give our young patients only the types and doses of medications that are right for them—to help them get better while limiting any adverse side effects. Our physicians work closely with our pediatric pharmacists to make sure the proportion of dosage and weight is correct to be effective and appropriate for our young patients. Our pediatric medical imaging specialists understand a child’s actively growing body is more susceptible to the effects of radiation, and a child may require multiple imaging studies during his or her lifetime. This means extra care is needed to ensure imaging studies on children are performed as safely as possible. Our medical imaging specialists view and interpret thousands of imaging studies on children every year. No one else in the region has that level of experience and expertise. In the operating room, our pediatric anesthesiologists follow the latest best practices for pediatric sedation and have the expertise to ensure the safest possible experience.

At Dayton Children’s, we practice medicine sized right for each child.

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helmets fitted last year

Pain busters on patrol

Because kids don’t have the same depth of experience with pain as adults, they aren’t always very good at explaining how they feel or describing what hurts. Fortunately, because we focus exclusively on the care of children, we are skilled at interpreting kids’ explanations of pain and their body language to quickly get them the pain relief they need.

Our Pain Busters program offers a number of different tools and techniques (many that are taught to parents) to help pinpoint and relieve discomfort in kids of all ages. We begin with a plan to manage a child’s pain that is specific to the child and the procedure. We help distract children from something uncomfortable through a variety of ways. We help parents use positions of comfort such as sitting in a lap or holding hands to provide some relief. And, we provide sedation and medications to help children relax and reduce their pain. Besides pain-reducing techniques, we also use a sophisticated vein-viewing machine that allows us to find hard-to-see veins when placing an IV so children have as few needle sticks as possible. We know that getting an IV is the most frequently reported painful event for children.

At Dayton Children’s, we keep a check on pain, finding the right way to relieve it.

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Because we speak "kid"

As any parent will tell you, kids speak a language all their own. At every stage of childhood, from birth through adolescence, communication between parents and kids can be challenging. And while this may create frustration at home, when it comes to medical situations, especially emergencies, a lack of effective communication can prevent a child from receiving the care he or she needs.

Communicating with children—using words and examples they understand—isn’t always easy. To speak “kid,” you need to understand developmental concepts, but realize that isn’t all it takes. It takes the sensitivity and experience that only comes with one-on-one contact with lots of kids, every day. A 2-year-old might appreciate a “hug” from a blood pressure cuff, but you’ll lose a 12-year-old with the same analogy. Teens may want to know the science behind an MRI; an 8-year-old just wants to know it won’t hurt. Both will be happy to know they can select their favorite music to listen to or video to watch during the procedure.

In all areas of our hospital, you’ll find staff who enjoy working with children and families, and who have the training, skills and resources to establish trust and to communicate with kids of all ages.

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Fear-calming game plans

It’s no secret that many kids are intimidated and sometimes frightened by medical procedures. To put kids at ease and help them through their care, we use various teaching activities to take the mystery out of what’s happening and distraction techniques to help children focus on something they enjoy while receiving care and treatment.

Our child life specialists—with training in child development and play therapy—work with patients to prepare them mentally and emotionally for treatment and procedures. We use toys, books, movies, video games and even an iPad to engage, entertain and educate kids during their visit. We can even perform virtual light shows set to soothing music with the help of a Sensory Rover distraction unit equipped with multiple ways to help kids relax during lengthy procedures. Our goal is to make each child as comfortable as possible and take the “scary” out of their visit. Whether here for surgery, an imaging test or treatment of a chronic illness, we know how to help kids be kids.

Another way we help ease anxiety before surgery is through presurgery tours. These tours allow kids and their families to get answers to their questions. Young children on the tour might be asked to think about what “flavor” of anesthesia they would like (bubble gum is a favorite), while older kids may be invited to see and touch the surgical instruments.

By using various teaching activities to take the mystery out of what’s happening and distraction techniques to help children focus on something they enjoy, we can put children at ease. It’s a game plan that works.

65,982
slushies a year

When seconds count, count on us

Due to their curious nature and still-forming physical abilities, kids tend to be more accident-prone than adults. And sometimes, things just happen. Whatever the reason, when a child experiences an emergency due to injury or illness, the speed and quality of the care delivered dramatically impacts the outcome. When seconds count, parents throughout the region trust Dayton Children’s to provide the care their child needs.

No other hospital in the region is more qualified to treat serious childhood emergencies. We are fully equipped to handle major pediatric health emergencies across 35 specialty areas and are certified by the American College of Surgeons as a Level II Pediatric Trauma Center. Our pediatric emergency doctors, surgeons and nurses have the specialized training and equipment necessary to quickly assess kids’ conditions and effectively treat them so they feel better, faster. And because our trauma and emergency center is customized specifically to meet the needs of pediatric patients, we have the ability to provide calming distractions in conjunction with the most advanced medical care. Throughout the emergency, we keep parents close-by whenever possible to offer support and comfort so kids can relax and focus on healing.

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Kid-smart care taught here

Because we are the region’s leading provider of advanced pediatric health services and are using best practices throughout the hospital, we are a sought-after destination for training and continuing education. The skills, techniques and understanding of children demonstrated by our doctors, nurses and allied health professionals inspire all who come here.

The specialized training, processes and understanding of leading-edge care that visiting students and professionals take with them when they leave our facility are implemented in their own practices or work environments to improve the services they provide for kids. It’s a ripple effect.

This ongoing expansion of our core, patient-centered values has built a solid foundation for the advancement of pediatric medicine in our region that’s sure to continue for generations to come.

For our part, the regular influx of new ideas and fresh perspectives into our facility provide opportunities for innovation and inspire us to keep moving forward in pursuit of better and better care for our region’s kids.

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diapers changed last year

Breakthroughs that rock

Dayton Children’s is at the forefront of pediatric health services. Since we opened our doors, we’ve worked tirelessly to advance the health and well-being of kids throughout our region, and our mission to improve the health status of all children continues today.

We are always on the lookout for the latest breakthrough technologies to ensure the very best care for kids of all ages. For newborns, we have the innovative Cool-Cap® system that is used to regulate core brain function and stabilize body temperature to prevent or reduce neurologic injuries at birth. In fact, we’re the only facility in the area that has two of them. We also provide life-sustaining care for premature babies with advanced Giraffe OmniBed® baby stations. These technical wonders are equipped with everything that critically ill or premature infants need to thrive, including a self-contained incubator and provisions for integrating specialized equipment.

Children of all ages benefit from technical advancements. We've joined other children’s hospitals to work with medical equipment manufacturers to address the unique needs of children. From minimally invasive surgical techniques that reduce scarring and recovery times to specially designed diagnostics and testing instruments, we leverage the benefits of emergent technologies to ensure our region’s kids get the best care possible.

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Resources to spark healthy habits

Because we take the health of kids so seriously, one of our primary goals is to prevent them from becoming sick in the first place. To do this, our team of pediatric experts provides information and advice to kids and their families to help them make healthy and safe choices. We also recognize the vital role of primary care physicians, who along with parents and families, are in the best position to keep kids safe and healthy.

Dayton Children’s understands the value of parents connecting with others in similar situations and helping them obtain trusted child health information from the comfort and privacy of home. Parents can join the conversation with others on our active Facebook page, sign up for our health and safety blog, or use the symptoms search on our website that puts expert health and safety advice at their fingertips.

We also reach out to families in the communities we serve by offering educational programs and materials in print or online that provide practical tips and tools to help families enjoy healthier, more active lives. The Body Shop—a nutrition, exercise and lifestyle coaching program—is offered for kids ages 7-18; other experts educate families about the link between smoking and asthma. We also offer practical tips and advice to help families achieve improved lifestyles through healthy eating and activity.

Healthy habits start early and Dayton Children’s provides the resources to instill and reinforce them.

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helmets fitted last year

Safety knows no bounds

At Dayton Children’s, we provide a secure, comforting atmosphere for our young patients and pay close attention to every detail of their safety. We collaborate with 28 other children’s hospitals to identify the best procedures for keeping kids safe, and maintain a culture of quality and safety at Dayton Children’s that extends to every member of our team and even into kids’ lives outside our walls.

Through this collaboration, we developed best practices for inserting and maintaining central line venous catheters used to deliver medication, intravenous fluids and nutritional supplements, and to obtain blood samples, resulting in fewer needle sticks. In implementing these best practices, we led the way in advancing care for children in intensive care by going more than 18 months without a single bloodstream infection from a central line. This is just one example of our efforts to keep kids safe.

A big part of protecting our patients’ safety is making sure we are tracking the appropriate quality indicators. These include avoiding complications after surgery, preventing infections, and knowing exactly what medications kids need and when they need them. We make sure we have a child’s most up-to-date medication list, and all medications are given as required and according to doctors’ orders. But we don’t stop there.

Because we understand kids live in the real world, we provide health and safety education programs and information that help protect kids at home, in the car, on the playing field and just about everywhere else. We actively promote and provide childhood immunizations, and offer education on important child safety topics such as safe sleep for babies, proper car seat and bicycle helmet use, teen driving and safety in cyberspace.

We’re working to keep kids safe inside and outside our hospital.

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A strong voice for the region's children

Dayton Children’s is dedicated to being the voice for children at local, state and national levels when decisions affecting their well-being are made. Because children can’t vote, Dayton Children’s is committed to making sure legislators and lawmakers know what’s best for kids.

We are also a voice for children who can’t speak for themselves on the devastating effects of child abuse and neglect. We are key partners in three regional child advocacy centers—CARE House, Michael’s House and the Child Advocacy Center of Warren County—to ensure vulnerable children throughout our region are given a voice and are protected from additional harm. The specially trained child advocacy team knows how to prepare each child for the challenging steps needed to obtain justice.

To make sure we are current on health and safety issues facing our community, children get a voice through the Pediatric Health Assessment, which is conducted every three years to determine what health and safety concerns are most important to our region. With this data, Dayton Children’s and its community partners can more effectively target and remedy identified issues.

Together with others in our community, we provide a strong, caring voice for our region’s kids.

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A helping hand nearby

You don’t have to travel the world to get world-class care. At Dayton Children’s, we know that parents want what’s best for their kids and that includes being near expert care without traveling too far from home. Not only is the hospital centrally located in our region, but we offer urgent care, outpatient specialty care centers and outpatient testing locations throughout the region.

Our pediatric specialists provide specialty services to children in the farthest reaches of the north and south counties in our region, attend difficult births at community hospitals and work with these community hospitals to implement the latest pediatric treatment protocols.

Our newborn and pediatric transport teams staff mobile intensive care units that travel to all corners of our 20-county region so that premature babies as well as critically ill or injured infants, children and teens can be safely transported to Dayton Children’s for the specialized care they need. We work closely with first responders to make sure that in emergency situations, these essential care providers have the skills and the tools they need to initiate life-saving care.

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A community with heart

Dayton Children’s has been blessed and strengthened by a legacy of caring that began more than 40 years ago when a small group with big dreams won the support of a generous community. We have seen that generous spirit and commitment grow along with our need to meet the changing needs of the region’s children and families.

A growing number of the children and families we serve are unable to afford the care their children need. Since we are the only freestanding children’s hospital in our region and one of just 50 in the country, Dayton Children’s serves as a critical safety net hospital for the most seriously ill and financially vulnerable children. Our community’s financial support and volunteerism make it possible for us to care for every child needing our services, attract top pediatric specialists to our staff, purchase the most advanced technology and accommodate the community’s need for key services.

We’re just right for kids—for all kids—because of a very generous community.

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Celebrating childhood every day

Being a kid is all about a certain sense of wonder that comes from finding joy in simple things and using imagination to create worlds where anything is possible. It’s about feeling loved and expressing honest emotions. And it’s about play...and cool walls made of marbles.

At Dayton Children’s, we understand what it means to be a kid, and we celebrate it. We’ve created a place where kids of all ages can be themselves while receiving the comfort and specialized care they need. Kids will find awesome walls made of marbles or might dance in front of an interactive video wall. Gaming stations can be found throughout the hospital, and there’s even an outdoor playground. We’ve got loads of constructive distractions for kids at every stage of childhood. Photos and artwork by kids, for kids can be found throughout our facility, and we provide pet therapy programs to ease stress. We even have slushie machines!

And because we value kids’ opinions, we maintain the Kids Speak Youth Advisory Council which provides critical insights about what the kids under our care want from their experiences so we can continually improve our services. By making our care environment as engaging and kid-friendly as possible, kids feel a sense of normalcy and relaxation that aids in their treatment and recovery.

There’s no place quite like Dayton Children’s. We’re just right for kids, and it shows.

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Kristin's story

A few years ago, I was looking for an opportunity to volunteer in my community.  I did a little brainstorming and ran through things I might be good at...volunteering with animals?  Not so much, as I sneeze just looking at pictures of cats.  ...doing yardwork for shut-ins?  If I didn't step on the rake, crack my face with it, and then trip down the stairs putting it away, I'd probably be great at it!  ...working with kids?  Hmmmm...I love kids, have worked with them before, and have yet to scare any away (I think!). 

So I discovered the volunteer program at Dayton Childrens.  And as luck would have it, I was assigned to the Family Resource Center working for the lovely Teresa Giehl.  And, having worked in a library for the past few years, was so excited to learn that I would be responsible for passing out books and movies to the kids - talk about a dream job!

Over the next few months, once a week, I had the pleasure of meeting so many wonderful people.  And I had so much fun!  Hey, when you're the only person coming in to a kids' room and you aren't there to give them a shot or poke them for vitals, you'd have a lot of fun, too!  I can't tell you how much I learned during my time at Children's.  I learned that the staff, from the volunteers who answer the phone, the nurses who take care of all the kids like their own, the doctors who take a few extra minutes to comfort a confused

parent, the custodians who take a minute to help someone find the room they're looking for - the hospital staff is in every single way geared toward patient care and comfort.

I learned that even if you're a 16 year old girl battling cancer, a boy telling you that he wants to "take a break" can hurt more than any treatment.  I learned that Disney princesses can make almost any little girl smile.  I learned that all teenage boys, no matter their illness, laugh like crazy when they see Wayne's World.  And all boys, without fail, snicker at the title of the "Captain Underpants" books.  I learned that taking a few minutes to talk about something "normal", like your favorite book can ease stress.  As one little guy put it to me, after taking a huge breath, "I-love-Curious-George-because-he-can-climb-everywhere-and-doesn't-get-in-trouble-and-he-can-walk-on-his-hands-and-his-feet-and-has-adventures-and-eats-bananas!"  I learned that holding the door of an elevator, the smallest of kindnesses, can mean the world of difference to an exhausted parent.

I learned that counting the positive ways Dayton Children's affected me requires more fingers and toes than I'll ever have.

Jessica's story

My son was admitted to the NICU with NEC. The nurses, doctors, nurse practitioners, residents, respiratory and all other staff that cared for my son were wonderful. They were all angels and made the 7 days we were there easier because of their compassion and care. Our son lost his battle but if not for the excellent care he received we would have lost him sooner than we did. I can never thank them enough or express truly how wonderful they all were to us. I have told everyone that I have spoken too what a wonderful team that you guys have in the NICU. May god bless you all for the work and care you give.

Korey's story

My son, Jacob, is now 12 years old, and last Christmas season specifically we were in the ICU for 1 week and the 3rd floor for 2 weeks following the ICU. Previously, we had been in the other wing of 3. We've spent many a Christmas seasons (in addition to other seasons) at Childrens, varying from 3rd floor, 4th floor, and ICU. My son has a rare degenerative brain disease called Dysgenesis of the Corpus Callosum. Along with this and many other medical problems, he is immunocompromised and easily catches anything with which he comes in contact. We have excellent specialists (Dr. Lacey, Dr. Ross, Dr. Fink--all AWESOME) and have encountered wonderful nurses and other doctors at Dayton Childrens.

Natalie's story

I brought my son to Dayton Children's Back in Febuary of 2000. He was only about a month old when he first started having breathing problems. He would gasp for air, He would breath really fast and heavy, It was like he was having an asthma attack. You could hear him wheezing. I was not aware of what RSV was at that time, I was really scared. I cannot remember who his doctors were but they were wonderful, they made us feel at home and so comfortable. They had to give him breathing treatments, spinal taps, x-rays, etc. He was released after about 2 weeks and not even a week after being released I had to bring him back for RSV again. The second time, he ended up in ICU. I did not like having to see my son with IV's in his feet or hands, and hooked up to alot of machines but Children's did what they had to do and I appreciate them so much for everything they have done. My son is almost 12 and he has pretty much grown out of all the breathing complications but He has alot of allergies that cause his breathing to act up. Other then that, he is a perfectly normal boy. When I stayed at Children's with my son, They made sure I was comfortable and made me feel at home. They had video games, movies, food, etc. I even stayed at the Ronald McDonald House for a couple nights and That was a really nice place to be. Again, I just wanna say Thank You to Dayton Children's for everything you did for my son and I.  

Jen's story

Our lives changed on the late afternoon of July 9, 2010. Before that our kids had just a few appointments with Dayton Children's even though Michael was born with Down syndrome. He was pretty healthy. But that afternoon when we took him to the ER for a bloody nose that wouldn't stop, well, little did we know how often we would frequent there now. Michael was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. It was a HUGE shock. The ER doctor was so great with us. Even though it was a hard situation he came right out and said it. Gave us the time we needed to let it soak in...which honestly it didn't. Right away we were taken to the hematology/oncology inpatient unit. The next morning Michael had a spinal tap and bone marrow aspiration with chemo following the next day. All these new terms, new faces, and over abundance of information was thrown at us in a matter of 36 hours. But EVEYRONE there was so nice. They took their time to explain everything to us multiple times. They were so kind to Michael even when he was obviously so sick and very, very scared and sometimes downright mean. I am so thankful Dayton Children's has such a wonderful oncology unit for us to go to. I have come to love everyone there as has Michael even if he 'acts' mad at them sometimes for poking him so much. We still have a long road ahead of us. His last treatment is scheduled for November 2013. He will be 17 that month. What a glorious birthday we will celebrate!

Jennifer's story

It all started when my son was diagnosed with diabetes at birth. Aiden was the first baby born with diabetes at Dayton Childrens. The staff and physicians in the NICU of Dayton Childrens were the BEST. Everyone was very helpful and did all they could for Aiden and I. Not only do they take care of the patient they also take care of the families. Aiden went home at 3 weeks only to return a few weeks later with other complications. Long story short Aiden spent another 3 weeks there in the ICU with vomiting and very large amounts of diarrhea. After a long 3 weeks of no answers we soon found out that Aiden had a extremely rare condition. At the time we were told that there were only about 4-6 cases ever diagnosed in the world. The doctors of Dayton Childrens acted quickly and sent us off to the closest hospital capable of caring for Aiden. We were sent to Chincinnati Childrens where Aiden was given a life saving bone marrow transplant. Months later we were transfered back to Dayton Childrens where they welcomed us with open arms to resume Aidens care. This allowed me to be closer to home where my 3 year old was at home with family. Aiden was released from the hospital just a few weeks before his 1st birthday. I could have not ask for anything more from everyone at childrens from the nurses, doctors, volunteers, therapy, and many more. Everyone was wonderful and they made us feel like a part of their family. Who could have ask for more...Thank you!

Krista's story

Our son was born under respiratory distress. As the hours passed, his condition went from bad to worse. As parents, it was a helpless feeling to watch his chest cave in and out with each breath. It was obvious he was struggling to cling to life. A specialist was contacted with his vitals and the nursing staff was quickly advised to contact Dayton Children's transport team. Upon the transport team's arrival, they worked a miracle right before our eyes. By the time they loaded our baby boy into the ambulance, his coloring looked so much better and his chest was no longer caving with each breath. Thank you so very much. He went on to spend the next 11 days in the NICU. The nursing staff and doctors were amazing. At one point, our son needed to be hooked up to a ventilator. I will always remember that very difficult time, but the nursing staff kept us staying positive. They always kept us up on his condition and what they were doing. We also spent every day with the doctors as they met every morning to discuss the condition of every baby in the NICU. Those were the most difficult days of our lives, yet Dayton Children's made us feel welcome. Thank you for treating us like family and taking such wonderful care of our beautiful baby boy. He is alive and thriving well today because of you. We will be forever grateful!

Lauren's story

About five years ago, i was admitted into Dayton Children's for surgery on my spine to treat my scoliosis. The experience at Dayton Children's was great, i've never been to a better hospital. The doctors and nurses were all great, and treated my, as well as my family and friends with a large amount of respect. I later returned a second time about 6 months later for another surgery, to replace the titanium rod and screws on my spine. Going into the second time, i was not quite as nervous because i had experienced Dayton Children's before. Again, the doctor's and nurses were absolutely wonderful, i will forever remember the fact that, 3 doctors, whom had not been treating me but new of me came to visit and see how i was doing, that was awesome! Everyone at Dayton Children's was so nice, and attempted to make me feel as home as possible as they could. Now that i look back on my stay and experience at Dayton Children's i feel so blessed to have been able to been treated there. Dayton Children's Hospital povides more than treatment and care at their hospital. The people that work and volunteer at the hospital actually support and care about the patients and families that are their.

Charlotte's story

My son had a tumor in his chest and stayed at CMC 2 1/2 weeks during the summer of 2010. EVERYONE was wonderful. He is thriving today! We are so fortunate to have this facility in our community!

Jan's story

My child is a frequent flyer at CMC....her last couple of visits there were in Dec.2010 where she recive a traceostomy, in which all the pulmonary, IMCU staff were just wonderful , caring and give excellant training with the trach. This past June 2011, she received a spinal rod placement for her spine was a 90 degree curve and was crushing her right lung. Dr. Albert preformed the rod surgery and we couldnt be happier today. She now has gained weight and height and is more healthier now than she ever was...thanks CMC for all you do for my child!!! Not to mention CMC is the closest childrens hospital to me, which makes this convenient as well....

Sara's story

Our daughter, Amelia, was born by emergency c-section due to being transverse on Saturday, October 22, 2011. Like any first time parents, my husband and I were excited and terrified to have a new little life entrusted to us.  Little did we know how things would turn out.  On Monday morning following her birth, Amelia suffered an SVT, which is a very rapid heart beat.  A quick thinking nurse at Southview Hospital took her to the special care nursery where it was determined that her heart beat was racing between 250-300 beats per minute.  Within an hour a transport team from Dayton Children's had arrived and she was discharged to the NICU at Children's.  The team assured us that we were in good hands and told us every detail we needed to know about Amelia's care. From the beginning of our experience, we were treated like the only family at the NICU.

Once we arrived at Children's, Amelia received an full work up and ultrasound of her heart within a few hours of arriving.  The staff at the NICU made sure we were oriented with the floor and knew who was taking care of our daughter and what was going on.  Again, every detail for our daughter's care was described to us.  Over the course of several days, she was treated for her symptoms and everything seemed to be going well. We were due to be discharged Thursday afternoon.  As we were going through the discharge process, we had quite a surprise.  Dr. Ralston, one of the cardiologists that was treating Amelia ran up to the NICU and stopped us from leaving.  As it turns out, her attending physician had ordered one more EKG and it had ended up on the top of the pile.  As Dr. Ralston was wrapping up his day, he looked at her EKG and noticed a tiny anomaly that allowed him to diagnose her with Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, which is an extra electrical path in her heart that can cause SVT's.  He stopped our discharge process, cancelled the prescriptions he had ordered and began Amelia on a new treatment protocol, keeping us in the NICU for two more nights to monitor her progress. 

While we were heartbroken to still not be able to take our little girl home, we were astounded at the care and concern shown to us by the staff.  As you might be able to imagine, we were on our way home.  We had been staying at the Ronald McDonald House across the street and had checked out of our room.  Within minutes of finding out we were staying, one of the staff members at the NICU called the RMH and got our room back.  We had already paid for the prescription that was no longer valid.  One of the NICU staff called the pharmacy and had them graciously take back the medication and refund our payment.  Over and over again, I heard from several nurses, "I've never seen that before," either being stopped from discharge or the reversal from the pharmacy. 

Finally, on Saturday, October 29 around noon, we were discharged!  We went home with a heart monitor and instructions to use it, a stethoscope with orders to check on our daughter, a beautiful quilt made by a loving volunteer, and our precious little girl.  We were overjoyed...and still a little anxious about caring for our daughter!  However, we soon realized how much we had learned from the nurses, doctors and other excellent staff in the NICU.  Not only did they care for our daughter like she was the only patient, they also cared for us like we were the only parents.  The nurses gave us countless tips and advice on dealing with a newborn.  Lactation consultants helped me as a first time mom learn to nurse.  The volunteers sat and talked with us and let us get weepy from time to time.  In hindsight, we are so blessed to have been sent to the NICU at Dayton Children's.  Not that I ever want to do it again, but if we have to for Amelia's sake, I know where we are taking her. 

Thanks for giving us a chance to share our story.  Whether you are able to use it or not, it has done us good to share it.  We count the NICU among our blessings and you have our unending gratitude for the excellent care and concern shown to our daughter.

 

Dawn's story

My daughter was born 3 months early back in 1998, She was only 1 lb 7 0z and 13 in. long. I am thankful Dayton Children's has a transport unit that transported my baby to the NICU After arriving there She needed to have surgery for a Diaphramatic Hernia. The Awesome Doctors were able to perform that surgery on such a small infant which to me was amazing. She was in the NICU for almost 3 months, The Nurses and the Doctors kept us well informed during her stay. With all the wonderful equpiment and doctors and nurses there she overcome all odds and was released at 4lbs and 5 oz. because there was no reason to keep her there, she was breathing on her own, blood pressure was good, and she was gaining weight. Through out the last 13 years we have made several trips back to Dayton Children's and have always received excellent service from all the doctor's and nurses and staff. Thank you Dayton Children's for being so close to home!

Kendra's story

It's different being on the OTHER side of the medical chart. After 20 years of working for Children's we recently had to use this fine facility in all it's capacity. In the past 2 1/2 months we have had experiences with ED, AHU, 3w, surgery, lab, imaging and urology clinic. My 7yo is usually a pretty stoic kid....never really complaining unless it's REALLY a problem. So on a late August day when he started crying with back pain and vomiting reapeatedly, we decided to bring him to the ED. What they originally thought was a kidney stone turned out to be much more. After multiple tests, it turns out my boy had a dialated kidney and megaureter. There was a blockage in his ureter that was backing up into his kidney and causing the pain. I must say that everyone we encountered were gentle, friendly and understanding with my son....and with us, his parents. Our calls and questions were answered in a tiemly manner. They were quick and clean in their procedures. When they knew they would be causing him some discomfort (ie - blood draws) they hit his vein the first time and were done before he had a chance to complain. In surgery one of the anesthesiologists talked TO my son so I think he felt more at ease becasue he was being included. He has had 3 surgeries since late August and has never shown any apprehension. Dr. Nguyen has been great including us on all his findings and his next step in treatment. I don't work much in the main hospital so I don't believe he got this treatment because I am an employee. I saw this caring attitude everywhere I went. I have always advocated for the hospital but after EXPERIENCING the service we provide, I tell people THIS is the place to bring their kids. Children need to be treated in their own special place becasue they are little people.....not little adults.

Melody's story

We are so fortunate to have pediatric specialists in our own community. When my son was 4 years old he was diagnosed with Perthes Disease. He needed monthly x-rays and evaluations until age 7 when it was finally time for surgery to correct some bone problems. It was so helpful and convenient to be able to have all of these appointments right here in Dayton instead of driving to Columbus or Cincinnati. It was also wonderful to have top orthopaedic specialists to handle his case during that time and as he grows to adulthood. Same child also needed emergency treatment and plastic surgery on his face. Another fabulous surgeon here at Children's did an excellent job! I just can't say enough and feel so blessed to have these fine facilities, wonderful doctors, caring nurses, and dedicated volunteers. It has definitely made a difference in our life!

Beth's story

My daughter was in the picu at Dayton Children's for 30 days on a ventilator and 7 days on the regular floor. No one thought she was going to survive. The nurses and docs in the picu were amazing. They treated her with such love and care. They became family to me and we miss them every day. I can't thank them enough for everything they did for my daughter Kacey.

Ghiman's story

In April, 2009 we took Ghiman to see the lipid clinic at Dayton Children's. He was diagnosed as obese at the age of 8. After talking with the doctors and nurses at Dayton Children’s, I realized that I was overfeeding Ghiman. He didn’t like school lunch, so I thought by giving him a big breakfast every morning, he would have enough energy to make it through the day. We were told that we needed to change our lifestyle in order to prevent Ghiman from experiencing other complications related to obesity later in life. We were feeding Ghiman out of love, but after we realized how unhealthy he was, I had to correct what I had done.  So we took him to the lipid clinic and started their program, also out of love. As a family, we reduced the amount of soda we drink and now choose sugar-free beverages, water or milk. We also stopped eating large meals and choose healthier portions and save sweets for only important occasions like birthdays and holidays. Luckily thanks to the changes reccomended by Ghiman's doctors at Dayton Childrens, he doesn't have any signs of diabetes or other diseases associated with childhood obesity.

Kaitlyn's story

My daughter Kaitlyn has been coming to Dayton Children's almost her whole life. Kaitlyn had three heart surgeries and a lung removed at a different hospital before the age of six but has continued to see Dr. Ross for her long term care at Dayton Children's. Kaitlyn also deals with hearing loss in her right ear, a curved spine and her neck growing slowly at a 90 degree angle. She also was diagnosed with hemihypertrophy which causes one side of her body to grow faster than the other. In order to make up for the difference she wears a shoe lift on her right foot. We are very thankful that Kaitlyn is able to see all the specialists that she needs right here in Dayton, OH!

Colin's story

My son Colin was diagnosed with bilateral retinoblastoma, a rare childhood cancer, at the age of 5 months. Going through chemotherapy at that age is so difficult to a growing baby - the need for specialized equipment and care is so important! To have that kind of specialized care, in our town - where my husband and I could still be with my other children and family was crucial. We are so grateful to have Dayton Children's.

Avery's story

My daughter Avery Belle was diagnosed with steroid dependant asthma around 18 months. She is now 4 and has had several extended stays at Dayton Children's. She always gets personalized treatment and authentic care and support from the team of doctors, nurses and RT's. The atmosphere, treatment and facility is centered around kids -from the "dragon oxygen mask" to the flexible food service and awesome kids activities offered - Avery is always made as comfortable as possible during her stay. Thank you Dayton Children's for helping our family fight Asthma and keep Avery Belle healthy and happy! Dayton Children's is just right for our family!

Patrick's story

My son Patrick has spent his whole life in and out of Dayton Children's. From the time he was born he was taken to the NICU. Patrick was diagnosed with myelomeningocele, a birth defect in which the spine and spinal cord do not completely form. Since his birth, Patrick has seen many specialists at Dayton Children's and we are so thankful that they are here in our community. It would make it a lot more difficult to provide Patrick with the care that he needs if we had to drive outside of our region. Thank you Dayton Children's for all you have done for Patrick these past 16 years!

Robin's story

We have been at Children's often! We have 3 pretty healthy kids, but when we have needed Children's, the staff has always been extra supportive and caring to both my kids and to my husband and I. For various reasons over the years, we've visited the Emergency Room, been to Radiology, had bloodwork drawn, had outpatient surgery, and been to the GI and nutrition clinic, and we have been appreciative of the sincerely kind, specialized treatment that we have received. We have also visited an Outpatient Testing Center closer to where we live, and the staff there has been outstanding when we've had blood draws there. I can't say enough about the extra steps they took to make sure my little ones were okay despite being very apprehensive about the procedure. Thank you!

Dana's story

I brought my daughter into the ED because she was dehydrated. The nurses and physician were wonderful! They took great care of her and answered all of my questions. They took the time to make sure she was comfortable and that I was too. I can't say thank you enough!!!

Bailey's story

My daughter Bailey was diagnosed with infantile fibrosarcoma(very rare cancerous tumor) at 6 months old in 2000. After a couple surgeries and nine months worth of chemo, Bailey has been cancer free since 2001. We can never thank Dayton Children's enough for the wonderful treatment that Bailey recieved. We still have follow up visits to check for long term effects of the chemo. It's definately just right for kids.

Kristin's story

A few years ago, I was looking for an opportunity to volunteer in my community.  I did a little brainstorming and ran through things I might be good at...volunteering with animals?  Not so much, as I sneeze just looking at pictures of cats.  ...doing yardwork for shut-ins?  If I didn't step on the rake, crack my face with it, and then trip down the stairs putting it away, I'd probably be great at it!  ...working with kids?  Hmmmm...I love kids, have worked with them before, and have yet to scare any away (I think!). 

So I discovered the volunteer program at Dayton Childrens.  And as luck would have it, I was assigned to the Family Resource Center working for the lovely Teresa Giehl.  And, having worked in a library for the past few years, was so excited to learn that I would be responsible for passing out books and movies to the kids - talk about a dream job!

Over the next few months, once a week, I had the pleasure of meeting so many wonderful people.  And I had so much fun!  Hey, when you're the only person coming in to a kids' room and you aren't there to give them a shot or poke them for vitals, you'd have a lot of fun, too!  I can't tell you how much I learned during my time at Children's.  I learned that the staff, from the volunteers who answer the phone, the nurses who take care of all the kids like their own, the doctors who take a few extra minutes to comfort a confused

parent, the custodians who take a minute to help someone find the room they're looking for - the hospital staff is in every single way geared toward patient care and comfort.

I learned that even if you're a 16 year old girl battling cancer, a boy telling you that he wants to "take a break" can hurt more than any treatment.  I learned that Disney princesses can make almost any little girl smile.  I learned that all teenage boys, no matter their illness, laugh like crazy when they see Wayne's World.  And all boys, without fail, snicker at the title of the "Captain Underpants" books.  I learned that taking a few minutes to talk about something "normal", like your favorite book can ease stress.  As one little guy put it to me, after taking a huge breath, "I-love-Curious-George-because-he-can-climb-everywhere-and-doesn't-get-in-trouble-and-he-can-walk-on-his-hands-and-his-feet-and-has-adventures-and-eats-bananas!"  I learned that holding the door of an elevator, the smallest of kindnesses, can mean the world of difference to an exhausted parent.

I learned that counting the positive ways Dayton Children's affected me requires more fingers and toes than I'll ever have.