Northwest Hospital Foundation recently approved funding for two projects that directly impact patients and families in the Family Birthing Center and TCU/Rehab units of UPMC Northwest.
The projects, totaling nearly $15,000, will provide a new Healing Garden for TCU/Rehab patients; as well as safe sleep instructional books for families of infants born in UPMC Northwest’s Family Birthing Center.
The Healing Garden project was developed in collaboration with the TCU/Rehab staff to facilitate an environment that would provide patients with a private outdoor garden to enjoy during their extended hospitalization in the Transitional Care or Rehabilitation Unit. The garden will provide raised vegetable and flower beds enabling patients to directly participate in the planting, watering and ongoing care of the garden, including harvesting vegetables that can then be used in meals prepared for the patients.
Tables and seating areas will be part of the garden, allowing patients and families to enjoy visits, including meals, in an outdoor setting with views of the wooded area surrounding the hospital grounds. Other activities for patients, such as games and exercise programs, can also be held in the area. Plans call for the Healing Garden to be located outside of the Rehab Unit’s dining area that currently has direct access to a side yard of the unit.
The Family Birthing Center has received Silver Safe Sleep Certification from the Pennsylvania Cribs for Kids organization and plans to expand their current education efforts to families about Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) prevention and safe sleep procedures. The Family Birthing Center will provide Sleep Baby Safe and Snug board books, written by pediatrician Dr. John Hutton, to families of infants born at UPMC Northwest.
Safe Sleep is a concept developed in the 1990s by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) to reduce the risk of SIDS. It is known that by sleeping on a firm surface, alone, and on their back every time, an infant’s risk of SIDS is reduced by more than 50%.
The Family Birthing Staff is committed to providing a safe sleep environment to the infants in their care at the Family Birthing Center and to provide comprehensive education to parents so they can continue the practice in their own homes.
Both of these projects directly reflect Northwest Hospital Foundation’s mission to enhance UPMC Northwest’s ability to provide high-quality care to the residents of the region it serves by making financial resources available to UPMC Northwest.
Theresa Edder, Northwest Hospital Foundation executive director states, “The foundation funds programs and activities that go above and beyond what is normally supported throughout the entire UPMC system, and we’re proud to be able to enhance the efforts of the staff and physicians to provide excellent care to patients and families at UPMC Northwest.”