Driscoll's state-of-the-art MRI suite combines entertainment and technology to help ease patients' anxiety
November 11, 2013
CORPUS CHRISTI - Under construction since the spring, the newly renovated magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) suite at Driscoll Children's Hospital is now fully operational. The state-of-the-art suite could have come from the Starship Enterprise, with its streamlined architecture, new, larger magnet and features that allow patients to choose sights, sounds and even movies while they undergo an MRI.
Driscoll's newly renovated MRI suite includes a new, larger magnet, an ambient lighting system that can be coordinated with projected images that patients can choose (right), and a TV screen on which they can watch movies.
"Allowing children to control the environment when they may be nervous about a procedure helps them become calmer," said Ernest Chavez, Driscoll director of Radiology Services.
An MRI is a noninvasive, diagnostic procedure that uses a magnet to obtain detailed images of the internal structure of the body. It typically lasts 45 minutes to an hour.
Among the customizable features in the MRI suite is a projection system that displays moving, child-friendly images on a wall. Patients can choose from a variety of themes, including sky, underwater, jungle, South America and Europe. And each theme is paired with a color that illuminates the room via an ambient lighting system. If a child doesn't want a projection theme, they can choose the color of the lighting, or to have alternating colors. The lighting and projection can be programmed on a wall-mounted keypad when the patient arrives in the MRI suite or beforehand on a tablet.
A 32-inch, flat-screen TV in the room also allows patients to watch their favorite movie. They can bring their own DVD or pick one that is available in the suite, such as "Cars," "Ice Age," "Tangled" and "Iron Man." Children hear the movie through headphones. If they opt not to watch a movie, they can listen to music on their own CD or one that is on hand, like Taylor Swift or One Direction.
The renovation also includes a new magnet with a 70-centimeter bore, which is 15 centimeters larger than the previous magnet's. The larger bore size is beneficial in different ways. Patients can more easily see their parents while the MRI is being performed, Driscoll's technical and medical staff have easier access to the patient, it lessens the potential for claustrophobic feelings, and it can accommodate larger patients.
"With this equipment, an MRI can be a pleasant experience rather than one that may be scary to a child," said Driscoll radiologist Allister Arnold, MD. "At the same time, procedures can be done more efficiently."
This year, Driscoll's Radiology Services installed ambient lighting in its X-ray rooms, and it will also be incorporated in the computed tomography and nuclear medicine rooms. The ultrasound rooms will also be outfitted during future remodeling. Funding for the ambient lighting, including that in the MRI suite, came from Driscoll's annual Fiesta de los Niños fundraiser.
Driscoll's ER renovation project to benefit from Halliburton donation
November 11, 2013
CORPUS CHRISTI - Representatives from Halliburton will present a check for $50,000 to Driscoll Children's Hospital tomorrow, to go toward the redesign and expansion of Driscoll's Emergency Room. The donation was made possible by funds raised at the 20th annual Halliburton Charity Golf Tournament, held last month in Houston.
Approximately 35,000 children visit Driscoll's ER annually. The renovation and expansion of the ER began in July and is scheduled to last 16 to 18 months. The $12 million project will increase the size of the ER and lobby by approximately 5,000 square feet. It will result in a state-of-the-art ER and significantly enhance overall patient care at Driscoll
"Halliburton has been a dedicated supporter of children's health," said Martha Avery, Driscoll vice president of Development. "We are very fortunate to have such a great partner here in our region. We are extremely grateful to Halliburton for their generous support."
Each year, Halliburton partners with vendors, suppliers and employees to host its Charity Golf Tournament in Houston. Since its inception, the tournament has given nearly $8.5 million to charities across the United States. Two previous donations from the event have gone toward Driscoll's ER project.
"Making a real difference for organizations like Driscoll Children's Hospital is what the Halliburton Charity Golf Tournament is all about," said Joe Foster, Halliburton vice president of Business Development for the Southeast area. "It's remarkable to have proceeds from the tournament support worthwhile causes, such as Driscoll's ER renovation project, to continue providing hope and healing for children across South Texas."
What: Halliburton check presentation
When: 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 12
Where: Driscoll Children's Hospital, main lobby, 3533 S. Alameda St.
Driscoll's Cottage Shop again voted no. 1 consignment store
November 08, 2013
CORPUS CHRISTI - For the second year running, readers of the Corpus Christi Caller-Times have voted the Cottage Shop at Driscoll Children's Hospital the no. 1 consignment store in the newspaper's 2013 Best of the Best competition.
The Cottage Shop staff includes (left to right) Jim Tansey, Lydia Blunzter, Karen Easton, Kathy Jenkin, Dot Van Burkleo, Linda Kaatz, Susan Quiroz (manager), Maria Luisa Doyle, Pam Pudelka, Rosemary Fischer, Imelda Garcia and Margaret Meinecke.
The Cottage Shop, operated by the Auxiliary to Driscoll Children's Hospital, offers gently used and new merchandise at bargain prices, including men's, women's and children's clothing, toys, household items and collectibles. The store's first priority is to provide clothes and necessities to patients and their families who are in need, and 100 percent of the proceeds from sales go back to the hospital.
The Cottage Shop accepts donations of new and gently used items. Store hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. For more information, call (361) 694-5800.
Kiwanis Club apple sale benefiting Driscoll patients is tomorrow, Saturday
October 24, 2013
WHAT: The 31st annual Six Points Kiwanis Club Apple Sale will be held tomorrow and Saturday at Driscoll Children's Hospital's north parking lot. Cost: $40 per case of apples. Each case contains 88 to 100 Red or Golden Delicious apples. Proceeds benefit summer camps for Driscoll patients.
WHEN: Noon-6 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25 and 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 26
WHERE: Driscoll Children's Hospital north parking lot, 3533 S. Alameda St.
Patients will be treated to Halloween party at Driscoll Children's Hospital
October 15, 2013
WHAT: The Stripes Child Life Program at Driscoll Children's Hospital is partnering with volunteers from Spirit Halloween's Spirit of Children program to bring a Halloween party to patients at Driscoll Children's Hospital, including free costumes, activities and refreshments.
WHEN: 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 15
WHERE: Driscoll Children's Hospital auditorium, 3533 S. Alameda St.
Country music artists to entertain at Driscoll's Singer Songwriter Showcase
October 02, 2013
WHAT: Notable country music artists Tim Nichols, Marv Green and Jason Sellers will take the stage tomorrow night at Driscoll Children's Hospital's 8th annual Singer Songwriter Showcase at the Corpus Christi Country Club. The event precedes the 18th annual Golf Tournament on Friday. Proceeds from the events benefit Driscoll Children's Hospital.
WHEN: Singer Songwriter Showcase: 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 3
Golf Tournament: Registration at 11 a.m. Friday, Oct. 4
11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. buffet luncheon
1 p.m. shotgun start
5:30 p.m. awards party
WHERE: Corpus Christi Country Club, 6300 Everhart Rd.
Celebrity Celebration will showcase Driscoll patients' artwork
September 17, 2013
Annual holiday cards, Christmas storybook with their designs go on sale tomorrow
CORPUS CHRISTI - Driscoll's annual Hollywood-style Celebrity Celebration will be held tomorrow to mark the release of the hospital's 2013 holiday card collection and Christmas storybook. Celebrities at the event will be past and present Driscoll patients who created designs for the items.
"This is one of the largest, most exciting annual events we have and the Auxiliary to Driscoll Children's Hospital is proud to put it on," said Lizette Saenz, director of Volunteer Services. "We look forward to rolling out the red carpet and putting the spotlight on our little stars."
For this annual tradition, Driscoll patients from throughout South Texas drew pictures for nine holiday cards and a Christmas storybook. Community members selected the artwork to be used. Proceeds from sales of the items will go toward the Marcia K. Wilcox scholarship, which has benefited more than 90 Driscoll cancer patients since its inception.
This year's holiday card artists are:
Audrey Braugh, 9, of Corpus Christi
Mia Martinez, 12, of Corpus Christi
Melissa Gallardo, 11, of Port Isabel
Madeline Robinson, 11, of Corpus Christi
Keiana Vardon, 6, of Corpus Christi
Rachel Bundrick, 11, of Corpus Christi
Parker Mayfield, 3, of Taft
Teresa Esparza, 9, of Corpus Christi
Nyah Arismendez, 7, of Beeville
Storybook artists are:
Korin Cruz, 8, of Robstown
Aldrick Judd, 8, of Corpus Christi
Sabrina Cruz, 9, of Corpus Christi
Charleigh Wilson, 7, of Corpus Christi
Aidan Flores, 9, of Aransas Pass
Melissa Gallardo, 11, of Port Isabel
Rachel Bundrick, 11, of Corpus Christi
Jennifer Gonzales, 5, of Deer Park
Wendy Inocencio, 8, of McAllen
Emily Haefs, 16, of Corpus Christi
The children's artwork will be unveiled after they enter Driscoll's auditorium on a red carpet amid camera flashes and applause. Then they'll autograph their work for family, friends and fans. Following the celebration, they'll be treated to a limo ride to Gattitown for some food and fun.
The holiday cards and Christmas storybook can be purchased through Driscoll's web site, www.driscollchildrens.org, and at the hospital's Carousel Gift Shop. For more information, call (361) 694-5011 or 1-800-DCH-LOVE.
What: Driscoll Children's Hospital's annual Celebrity Celebration
When: 3 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18
Where: Driscoll Children's Hospital auditorium, 3533 S. Alameda St.
ExxonMobil gift to Driscoll will aid children's nutrition
August 26, 2013
WHAT: Representatives from ExxonMobil will present a check for $5,000 to Driscoll Children's Hospital. The funds will be used by Driscoll's Child Abuse Resource & Evaluation (CARE) Team to purchase specially designed dietary plates and educational materials that will be used to educate parents on healthy food and nutrition choices for their children.
WHEN: 1 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 27
WHERE: Driscoll Children's Hospital, main lobby, 3533 S. Alameda St.
Families with babies in intensive care at Driscoll find comfort from March of Dimes program
August 14, 2013
CORPUS CHRISTI - March of Dimes announced today that Driscoll Children's Hospital will launch a NICU Family Support Program®. The program, which provides information and comfort to families of premature babies and other critically ill newborns being cared for in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), is being funded by The Vishal Raju Bhagat Foundation.
"Preparing for a new baby is a time of great excitement," said Laurie Beck, RN, MSN, IBCLC, chair of the March of Dimes Program Services Committee in the Corpus Christi Division and director of Mom's Place, a breastfeeding resource center at Driscoll Children's Hospital. "Families don't expect anything to go wrong, but when something does go wrong, it can be very overwhelming. The Vishal Raju Bhagat Foundation's funding of the NICU Family Support Program will help make the journey through neonatal intensive care smoother and less traumatic for families."
The NICU Family Support Program is an important component of the March of Dimes' efforts to help all babies - those born healthy and those who need help to survive and thrive. As part of their commitment to help give every baby a healthy start, the March of Dimes has made medical and technological advances that have saved millions of babies' lives and health.
The NICU Family Support Program is now established in every state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. More than 86,000 families will have access to the information and support activities offered through the March of Dimes NICU Family Support annually.
"The March of Dimes is looking forward to partnering with Driscoll Children's Hospital through NICU Family Support because of its reputation for excellence and the quality care it provides to babies," Rosaura De Los Santos, Executive Director of the March of Dimes said. "Driscoll Children's Hospital does incredible work every day to care for sick babies and their families. We want to support their efforts."
Christopher Joyal, Driscoll's NICU director states "We are excited to be a March of Dimes NICU Family Support site and are looking forward to this collaborative effort to support parents throughout their stay with us. This is a wonderful opportunity to work with NICU parents and staff to develop programs specific to the needs of our families."
Incorporating NICU families into every level of the program, March of Dimes NICU Family Support addresses the needs of families throughout the hospitalization, during the transition home, and in the event of a newborn death. NICU Family Support also includes a professional development component to provide hospital NICU staff with support and educational opportunities. The program is led by hospital staff with professional NICU experience. Each NICU family receives a March of Dimes Parent Care Kit including informational books and materials to chart their baby's milestones.
What: Unveiling of NICU Family Support Unit
When: 10 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 15
Where: Driscoll Children's Hospital, third floor, 3533 S. Alameda St.
Community pitching in for annual Edinburg RoundUp
August 01, 2013
EDINBURG - On Saturday, Aug. 10, young 4-H and Future Farmers of America (FFA) members and the Hidalgo County Extension Office will team up for a great cause. The 26th annual South Texas Cattlemen's RoundUp benefiting Driscoll Children's Hospital will begin at 10 a.m. at Edinburg Livestock Auction.
A variety of products and services will be auctioned at the RoundUp that will appeal to farmers, ranchers and visitors. All will be provided by 4-H and FFA members and area businesses, and proceeds will go toward new medical equipment and additional program support for Driscoll patients who live in the Rio Grande Valley.
To make a donation and support the healthcare needs of local children, go to www.driscollchildrens.org and click on South Texas Cattlemen's RoundUp, call Driscoll's Reagan Florence at (956) 223-0687 or call the Hidalgo County Extension Office at (956) 383-1026.
What: 26th annual South Texas Cattlemen's RoundUp
When: 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 10
Where: Edinburg Livestock Auction, 3418 N. Closner Blvd.