As parents we want to live in a world where our babies (no matter their age) are safe and healthy. Yet we know that what we want is not always what we get; we cannot always keep the bad at bay. Knowing that there will be times when our children get sick or injured – regardless of all the wants a parent might have – what a blessing it is, then, that when the unwanted and the unexpected strike, Billings is home to the region’s first Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU), St. Vincent Children’s Healthcare Pediatric ICU and Specialty Clinic, staffed 24/7 by Board Certified Pediatric Intensivists.
This February you’ll have the opportunity to support these important works and take part in giving children the healthy futures they deserve by tuning into Cat Country KCTR 102.9 for the 2nd annual St. Vincent Children’s Call for Kids Radiothon on February 16. You can become a “Healing Hero” by donating to St. Vincent Children’s Healthcare.
About St. Vincent Children’s Healthcare PICU & Specialty Clinic:
- Offers the latest technologies, experienced and highly skilled pediatric and neonatal nurses, a fully intensivist supported PICU, pediatric rehabilitation therapies, a family-friendly emergency department, specially trained transport teams and board certified pediatric specialists.
- Includes a Level IIIB Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) – the highest in the region.
- Specially trained Transport Teams for 24-hour transport, regardless of where your child is located. A comprehensive trauma team responds to meet the unique needs of children that are traumatically injured. (HELP Flight Helicopter, HELP Flight Fixed Wing).
- Starting in 2016, St. Vincent Children’s Healthcare partnered with Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah. The organizations will remain independent, but they will work closely to support local access to high-quality, advanced pediatric care and research.
Fundraising – like the Radiothon – is necessary, as the patient volume does not fully support the pediatrics program locally, explains Nichole Miles, Senior Director of Legacy Giving at St. Vincent Healthcare Foundation. She notes that a pediatric program of this caliber would normally need a population of a half million children to be self-sustaining.
Why your support matters: Reece’s Story
On September 24, 2015 Reece Gunshows was walking to school when he was hit by a car as he was crossing the street. Following that devastating accident Reece was taken to St. Vincent Healthcare, known for its strong Pediatric Unit. For two and a half months Reece stayed in one section or another of St. V’s Pediatric Unit and underwent 10-15 procedures in that time. Though there were incredible challenges to overcome, his recovery has been nothing short of miraculous, his mother Jessie Gunshows observed. Though he still goes to therapy daily and has a long road ahead of him he is making great strides, but it’s also a long process, said Jessie.
In the time Reece was hospitalized he was never without some member of his close-knit family, shared his mother. Now considered another part of their large family, the staff made a particular impact on the family, as Jessie noted they went above and beyond for her son and family. The nurses and doctors were “great with us,” said Jessie, “they told us what to expect. Whenever we had questions they answered them – whether it was a good or a bad answer, they just always made sure that we understood what was going on.” The nurses, Jessie went on to explain, really go to bat for those kids. “They’re a bunch of mama bears up there – I don’t know how else to describe it – they’re great people…I have never met anybody that is so protective over kids.”
An 8th grader, Reece is back in school half days and he says that it’s
“Great!” to be back.