2011 Sasha Bella awards for Family Centred Care Excellence

The 2011 recipients of the Sasha Bella Fund awards for Excellence in Family Centered Care in the Labatt Family Heart Centre are occupational therapist Lisa Hoffman and nurse practitioner Judith Wilson. Judith and Lisa are the most experienced staff to be nominated and as long serving heart center staff were anchors in Sasha's care from 2004-2006.

Lisa's home visits during Sasha's first year and a half helped her with every step of skills development from rollover to sit, crawl, walking hand over hand, first unaided steps and, a biggie, eating. Sasha's success with these basics were our good times and a huge confidence boost that Sasha could develop and we could help her and all live and love together for an unknown amount of time.

Judith was nurse practitioner during Sasha's catheterization visits and her final five month stay and the combination of her gentle way and calm communication and extreme nursing competence were integral to us staying positive and focused and learning to feel we could care for Sasha even though she had an extreme heart and liver condition.

The hard work of health care professionals like Judith and Lisa make family centered care appear effortless. Not surprisingly, both visited our home after Sasha died, among about a dozen 4D staff who did so. Sasha touched hundreds of staff at SickKids but these were stars among her closest circle of care and I was so happy to see them recognized.

Judith's nomination letter described her as "assertive, expedient and accurate during clinical crises and her 'straight shooter' style and positive, forward thinking are to be admired" and that she engages in "truly loving and kind acts" such as the support of a seven year old Japanese heart patient and her family. With the child immobile and in precarious health and the family dependent on an interpreter, the highlight of her day was a visit to Tim Hortons with Judith for an iced expresso. Judith took her with multiple IVs on a wheelchair to see Santa at the Eaton Centre and then a stop at Nathan Phillips Square to watch skaters. A several hour winter transport with a child in precarious health is typically not done for fun and this was a unique family experience that took great nursing skill.

As a lovely first, Lisa Hoffman's nomination was from a nursing colleague for care of her child and family and Carrie's words as a mom and nurse educator resonate strongly as we celebrate family centered care.
"When our family reflects on what Lisa did for us, we see that she really listened, she trusted us, she helped ease the burden of uncertainty and she developed a plan of care that was doable and that worked for my daughter and our family. Lisa was the first and only health care professional who presented the big picture to us in a meaningful way."
Carrie credits "meltable-solids" as allowing her daughter to eat finger foods today and "tearless tolerable exercises which mimicked playtime" as life changers for her child and family.

Lisa and Judith, thanks for what you do so well each day for sick kids.

Also a big thanks to the many staff who have made time over five years for work to circulate, nominate, select, contact recipients and confirm nursing award day arrangements.

Judith received a rose from Nursing and a framed award from the Sasha Bella Fund after Nursing Excellence Awards on May 7 and Lisa's award will be at a future event of her and Rehab's choosing.

Exciting Patient Safety Symposium - June 9, 2011

SickKids 7th Annual Patient Safety Symposium on June 9, 2011 offers an exciting lineup. Here is a taste of the day from the titles of the presentations: adverse events in hospitalized children in Canada, UK Paediatric Trigger Tool, teamwork and communication, system wide learning from critical events and improving parent provider communication. Breakout sessions are on trigger tools, simulation, targeting zero and family council (FCCAC) parent David Mosher with Drs Niraj Mistry and Stephen Porter on 'Optimizing Patient Safety Through IT Solutions'.

The number and quality of SickKids patient safety presenters speaks to the energy and committment of staff across the hospital to tackle safety and include parents in this critical initiative. Here is the symposium's online agenda.

A testimony from the CCCU

During a break in the liver family day I bumped into the clinical director of the Critical Care Unit in the Atrium. He was one of two of Sasha's most senior helpers in CCCU and we had our most challenging conversation about Sasha and care with him about a week into her ICU stay. He sent me this note which I have lightly edited as to the positive impact of the ICU's family communication program which the Sasha Bella Fund For Family-Centered Care supported in 2010 and also to the continued relevance of family supports.
I recently dealt with a very challenging case with team/communication issues, some errors and a complex ICU stay.  The child died and I have been helping the mother get through the post death trauma. I stressed the things that are in place to deal with mitigating error, reporting and review of error and how we create an environment of no blame and encourage individuals to self report in a constructive way. I told her of our experience with getting members of our staff trained in Crucial Confrontations and, further, being trained as trainers. I  am one of 2 physicians here who have done this. After I told her that another family had been instrumental in this happening, she asked me to recognize that family. So here it is.

Canadian Family Advisory Network is at CAPHC October 2011

If you volunteer or work at a pediatric care facility and are passionate about family and staff partnership in children's health then you want to attend the CFAN workshop on October 17, 2011 in Ottawa. Here are the main bits of the co-chair's most recent update on the workshop and CAPHC conference - note the last item about new, monthly professional development tele-sessions for family-centered care workers.

CFAN at the Canadian Association of Paediatric Health Centres Conference (CAPHC) in Ottawa - Saturday October 15th and Sunday October 16th, 2011

We are very excited to announce that Dr. Karen Wayman, Endowed Director of Family Centered Care at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital at Stanford will be our keynote speaker and afternoon workshop facilitator. Karen's attendance has been made possible through the generous support of CAPHC and Children's Health Foundation.

The CFAN Workshop Planning Committee is collaborating with Christine Kouri, Patient/Family Representative and Coordinator for Patient/Family Centred Care and the Family Forum at CHEO, to plan this one and a half day event. CFAN members who have suggestions or ideas about topics you would like us to consider please send an email by the end of April. We will use past evaluation along with our discussions with Karen to inform our agenda.

Important Registration Information: Family Advisors who do not have a budget to attend the CFAN workshop will be granted a complimentary registration. Members will need to obtain a code that will be given to them by contacting the CFAN Chairs. CAPHC is also offering a reduced Family Rate for the entire conference. Please continue to check the CAPHC website for up to date conference registration processes. Contact Lisa.Hawthornthwiate AT lhsc.on.ca or Sherri.wuetherick AT albertahealthservices.ca for the complimentary registration code.

CAPHC Conference: October 17th - 19th, 2011

Plans for October's CAPHC Conference in Ottawa are falling quickly into place. After last year's focus on "What's working now?" this year's theme is "Exploring the future of children's health care: What can we expect? How do we prepare?"

Among the highlights: Dr. Michael Evans, a wonderfully good-humored and forward-thinking family doctor, teacher and researcher, will give the keynote and Dr. Brian Goldman of "White Coat, Black Art" fame will lead a participatory session exploring how best to respond to and shape the changes ahead. The next day (Tuesday) will feature a performance of "Ed's Story" from Halifax and concurrent sessions on the future of primary care and impact of social media on everyone involved in child and youth health, a session CFAN will take a particularly active role in helping to plan.

There will be lots of time and space for posters--please think about submitting one yourself--and opportunities throughout for useful and enjoyable networking.

Visit CAPHC for conference information and updates from CFAN.

Patient and Family Centred Care Leaders Collaborative

With support from CFAN and CAPHC a new group has been formed for Leaders who are tasked with leading FCC change at their organizations. Monthly professional development topics with a supportive peer to peer atmosphere is offered for Leaders working in these unique roles. Please contact CFAN Director, robin.england AT iwk.nshealth.ca for more information about these telesession opportunities.

For information or to register please email CFAN co-chairs Lisa.Hawthornthwiate AT lhsc.on.ca or Sherri.wuetherick AT albertahealthservices.ca