Anyone who’s ever had a very sick kid knows that Memphis is a great place to get healed at some of the worlds’ best children’s hospitals. (The photo above is by Stephen Hackett, whose own kid Josiah has been a LeBonheur patient.)
When I toured LeBonheur a few weeks ago, I was struck by the emphasis on family-centered care. Parents are able to stay in hospital rooms with their sick children and the doctors and nurses are focused on working with parents to make sure that kids get better.
One of the most special parts of the hospital is the Bunny Room, a tradition at the hospital where children are able to pick out a toy before surgery so that they have something comforting around them when they wake up.
LeBonheur is building a 12-story addition to the hospital that will double its capacity. The new building will include patient rooms, a bigger NICU, a larger emergency department and more of the family-centered care that LeBonheur is known for.
The new building is opening in 2010, and LeBonheur has launched a campaign to invite Michelle Obama to attend the opening. It would be a wonderful opportunity for the first lady to see firsthand the impact that LeBonheur makes on the community every year and the hundreds of doctors, patients, staff and volunteers that make LeBonheur such a wonderful place.
Here’s how you can help: Call 901.287.6030 and request some postcards to send to the White House. Write a formal letter to Mrs. Obama (the address is here). Tell your friends and family about the campaign. Let’s let the First Lady know what amazing things we have going on in Memphis.