Just like adults, kids and teens can have mental health conditions. And just like adults, their conditions are often brushed aside or shrouded in stigma.
“First of all, just talking about mental health conditions is challenging,” says Heather Huszti, PhD, CHOC Children’s chief psychologist. “You can’t see it, and misperceptions about symptoms and treatment persist in the media and society. We have a lot of education to do to dispel myths.”
When a hospital offers the highest level of care attainable, it carries a responsibility to make that care available to as many patients as possible.
CHOC Children’s does not take that responsibility lightly. Its neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) is designated a level 4, the highest level by the American Academy of Pediatrics. The NICU is equipped to care for the most critically ill babies, and in 2016 broke ground on an expansion to add 36 private rooms. Learn more.
The road to good health is not always an easy path to navigate. CHOC Children’s is determined to make it a smoother trip for families and providers alike.
This past year, CHOC Children’s Network was created as part of the hospital’s population health strategy, with an end goal of keeping kids healthy. The new network strengthens the relationship between pediatricians and specialists to deliver seamless care along the entire spectrum from wellness and preventive services, to managing chronic disease and treating serious illness. This new approach is the opposite of the historically fragmented health care system in the United States. Learn more.
Every year, patients travel to CHOC Children’s to access care they can’t find anywhere else, including cutting-edge clinical trials. Their willingness to crisscross the globe to participating these studies has placed the hospital on the map as a leading destination for innovative care.
One of these families is the McGregor family of Blackfalds, Alberta, Canada who found CHOC while searching for treatment alternatives for their 11-year-old daughter, Katharina (Katha). Katha has Niemann-Pick disease Type C (NP-C), a rare genetic disease that causes cholesterol to accumulate in the brain, lungs, liver and spleen, leading to deterioration and early death. Learn more.
If you are searching for the definition of survivor, you need look no further than Amy Jennings. Her journey—from being rushed to the emergency room at age 16 with extreme pelvic pain and the discovery of tumors spread all over her uterus and ovaries to her life today as a 31-year-old nurse, wife and mother—demonstrates how medical advances combined with sheer human determination have created a new generation of cancer survivors living full, meaningful lives. Learn more.
Husband-and-wife Michael Muhonen, MD, CHOC neurosurgeon, and Linda Muhonen, MD, CHOC cardiologist, are determined to leave a legacy that allows CHOC to continue delivering excellent care well into the future. In that spirit, they started The Muhonen Family Endowment fund supporting the CHOC Children’s Neuroscience Institute.
Along with donating monthly to grow their endowment fund, the Muhonens also arranged a planned gift through a $1 million life insurance policy that will support the Neuroscience Institute after their passing. Learn more.