Steve with his wife Misci at celebratory graduation dinner
Pediatric Home Service is excited announce that Steve Roberts, Director of Operations, has completed the Carlson School of Management Minnesota Executive Program.
Designed to enhance business knowledge and skills, this strategy and leadership development program addresses topics such as marketing, strategic innovation, finance, operations and ethics among others.
“At PHS, continued education and opportunities for employees to expand their knowledge base are always encouraged,” said Pediatric Home Service President Mark Hamman. “This program provides an immense amount of leadership and skill development, and we look forward to Steve being able to apply the valuable insights he took away.”
Roberts, who supervises the biomedical department as well as purchasing, shipping and receiving, was one of 18 people admitted to the 2012 program. Participants were recognized for their completion of the course during a dinner held by the Carlson School of Management in Chaska, Minn., on December 13, 2012
It can be easy to get caught up in the festivities and excitement centered around this time of year. All of the countless errands, the parties, the cookies, and the presents to buy. But ultimately all of that leads to the most important part of the holiday season, spending time with your loved ones.
Thinking about our jobs here at Pediatric Home Service I am overcome with gratitude. I am grateful for the role we get to play in our families lives. Every single person in PHS from the warehouse, to the pharmacy, the administrative team, to the billers, play a role in safely getting medically-complex children out of the hospitals and at home with their family. This transition from hospital to home is a miracle every time that it happens, but I believe the holidays give everyone around here that little extra boost of motivation to get kids home in time for the special day. There is nothing like having everyone at home celebrating and making lifelong memories.
We understand this transition can be scary and overwhelming for our families and we want to thank you for putting your trust in PHS to be a part of your extended family on this journey. We recognize how special it is to have your child at home with you. And we feel blessed to be a part of that. Enjoy your holidays and know that your child’s safety and comfort is our #1 goal and we are never more than a phone call away. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
I know I speak for everyone at PHS when I say Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a very blessed New Year to each and everyone of you.
If you watch the video below you can now say you have.
PHS employees never cease to amaze with their costume creativity on Halloween. This year we had the whole Peanuts gang, life sized tetris game pieces, characters from the game Guess Who? and many many more. We even had some little ones stop by for in office trick-o-treating. Check out the pictures on our Facebook page and watch the video slideshow below with a Halloween send off from two of the cutest bugs you’ve ever seen!
Which costume is your favorite? We’d love to see pictures of your tikes all dressed up. Send them to our Facebook page to show off your ghouls and goblins.
PHS employees are pretty lucky to work for an organization that puts such importance on giving back and volunteering time. We get fantastic opportunities to be out in the community supporting like-minded organizations that support medically-fragile kids and their families. This week, Sharing Care volunteers had a great time helping out at the Coleberry Golf Tournament benefiting HopeKids MN! We spent the morning helping out with the kids golf clinic on the driving range and the putting green. In the evening we had fun driving the golf carts around the course taking down tents once the tournament was over. But a word to the wise, watch out for the poles when taking down tents, PHS volunteer, Bruce, will tell you that they don’t feel too good on your head. You can check out all of the pictures on the PHS Facebook page.
HopeKids MN is an organization that provides ongoing events & activities and a powerful, unique support community for families who have a child with cancer or some other life-threatening medical condition. Have you heard of HopeKids? Do your kids participate in their events? If so, what has your favorite been? We’d love to hear from you.
The reality that faces many parents of medically-fragile, technology-dependent children is one that is little known by the general public. On this week’s Mom Enough webcast PHS Medical Director, Dr. Roy Maynard shed’s light on the challenges and considerations these parents and their families face before and after discharge from the hospital.
Some of the “things to consider” that Dr. Maynard touches on throughout the interview are:
Dr. Maynard with Marti and Erin Erickson in the studio
Do you and your family have the capability to provide the level of care that your child needs at home?
Are you going to be willing to go through all of the training to understand the your child’s illness, the different pieces of equipment, how they work and how to troubleshoot?
Do you have trained family resources or community resources that can help you out in emergency situation if your in-home nursing misses a shift?
How will your medically-fragile child affect your relationship with your other children? How do you find balance between you healthy and medically-fragile children?
How will this impact finances? A lot of these children exhaust their private healthcare very quickly. The PHS Medical Social Work is a great resource for our families who need financial assistance.
Your child’s stability- no child can go home from the hospital unless they are stable.
Your house must have air and heat, a ventilated child will not tolerate overheating. Air conditioning is a luxury to many people, you need to be sure the environment you bring your child into is safe for their cares.
Does your house have the proper electrical set-up for the equipment your child will be coming home with? Will you need to ground any outlets, or rewire to ensure consistent power?
Many families have backup generators in the house in the event of an outage, will you need to get one of those?
Your power company needs to be aware that you have a technology dependent child in the home, and in the event of an outage that your home needs to be made a priority.
Are you comfortable with the idea of nurses in your home up to 24 hours a day 7 days a week?
These are only a few of the many, many considerations and challenges that face families bringing home a medically-fragile child from the hospital but it gives those out there without any exposure to this world, an idea of the world of homecare can be like. You can learn more about homecare on the Pediatric Home Service website, facebook page, or by listening to the full webcast.
One extremely important piece to remember in this situation is that families in these situations are never alone. PHS is here to help navigate the tricky healthcare waters. We provide services to keep children home, safe and thriving all while keeping families together. PHS has put together a list of things to consider before discharge to help families through the process to ensure they have covered as many of the bases as possible before going home.
Are you the parent of a technology-dependent, medically-fragile child? Does this sound familiar to you? What were some of your best resources when you first went home? What were some of the unexpected challenges?
August 5–11 is Home Parenteral Nutrition (HPN) Awareness Week.With the goal of demystifying HPN and helping others better understand what HPN patients go though on a daily basis, the Oley Foundation has come up with plenty of ways you can get involved throughout the week and we’d like to share some of them with you!
The awareness we are able to spread as a group over the week will be largely up to you! You are the heart of the effort, and your experiences are key in creating understanding and hope in others. Contact your local media, post your story on the PHS Facebook page, upload a YouTube video, or send us your story via email (email@example.com) so we can post it in our blog and share with all the PHS followers—the more we all work together to spread the word, the larger an impact we can have.
Be sure to use HPN Awareness Week logo as Facebook profile photo; and join in on any discussions!
explain what home parenteral nutrition is and how it has helped you. Tell your family, friends and co-workers
distribute and wear HPN Awareness Week buttons (available through Oley)
post on Web sites, blogs
share Oley materials with someone with a similar diagnosis
send letters to elected officials; write to local media (samples at oley.org)
write a letter to the editor
how to travel with HPN, share some facts about HPN and/or Oley, etc.
write a letter to the editor
explain how knowing others on HPN has helped you, introduce Oley (and RCs), how to connect to others
share information packets with doctors, other organizations, etc. (available through Oley)
Third item of embedded list
address misconceptions (HPN can be administered at home, can help one feel stronger, etc.)
letter to editor
talk to family, friends, co-workers
share a positive experience you have experienced because of HPN, and what made it positive
Wednesday June 20- Saturday June 23 were dedicated to all things SMA. The Twin Cities were lucky to be the hosts of the 2012 National Spinal Muscular Atrophy Conference. With over 1,100 attendees the conference was a great success and was jam packed with fun and learning, PHS was excited to be there every step of the way.
PHS Respiratory Therapist, Carrie, shows conference attendee's an electronic percussor
There were many sessions, events and activities keeping attended busy over the 4 day conference, including:
40 Vendors, a record number for the conference. PHS was happy to participate as a vendor discussing services, technology, equipment and cares for SMA patients.
The first ever SMA Family and Research Dance Party! (The kids sure were exhausted the next day)
38 workshop sessions for SMA families and professionals.
The Meet-N-Greet where families connected with one another at the very start of the conference.
A Family Fun Fest with over 30 carnival games for all of the children.
Over 200 SMA Researchers who attended the 16th Annual SMA Research Meeting, joined in the Researcher Relay Race where SMA Researchers raced in manual wheelchairs with some of the children.
The Children’s Program, which allowed parents to attend workshop session and where over 250 children enjoyed activities, movies, games and craft projects.
A Researcher Q and A session for parents to hear about the most up to date research news.
Believe it or not, the weekend was not only about fun. There was a lot of learning that took place as well. We recently received the link to all of the presentations that have been posted online thus far from the conference. So, if you weren’t able to attend, or if there was one workshop you couldn’t make it to, now is your chance to watch what you missed. Click here to be taken to the Families of SMA website where PDFs, PowerPoint presentations and videos of the sessions have been posted.
Did you know that this Sunday, July 22nd is National Parents’ Day? If you were looking for something to celebrate this weekend, I think you’ve found just the occasion.
Just a few of our amazing PHS parents.
According to the National Parents’ Day Council website, although similar to Mother’s and Father’s day, Parents’ Day focuses on “recognizing, uplifting and supporting the role of parents in the rearing of children.” In 1994 President Bill Clinton signed into law a resolution adopted by the US Congress to establish the fourth Sunday of every July as Parents’ Day.
PHS would like to take a moment to recognize all of the parents who care for our amazing patients. You deserve many accolades, likely far more than are typically given to you. You devote yourself to the well being of your child and for that we thank you. I myself, am not a parent to a medically-fragile child, but you better believe that myself, along with everyone here at PHS, are your greatest cheerleaders. You all provide me with inspiration on a daily basis with your courage, determination, intelligence and most of all the love you show your children. I am going to pull a quote from one of my all-time favorite blog posts recognizing parents of special needs children.
“You rock because you involuntarily calculate the thousand different variables in every situation and adjust for them on the fly. Because you are alert for the danger, the triggers, the anything, the everything that might turn everything on a dime. Twenty, thirty, hundreds of times a day. Navy Seals have nothing on you, kid.” ~Jess
PHS understands what a whirlwind life becomes when preparing to leave the hospital with a medically-fragile child. We met with a few of our experts, PHS Medical Director, Dr. Roy Maynard and PHS family mom and Infusion nurse, Jill Wall, RN, BSN, CRNI as well as included input from the entire clinical team to compile a list of tips for families to consider when getting ready to leave the hospital. Once the process is in place for a patient to leave the hospital and they are stable and ready to go, things can move rather quickly. The tips below will help get you organized and ensure you have necessary information from the hospital staff before you leave, ensuring you won’t have to make extra phone calls to track down information later.
What to consider before leaving the hospital:
All contact info on one piece of paper. Ask the hospital for one single piece of paper that has the contact information for your primary care doctor and all the different specialists who will be following your child after discharge, and when to call them. The hospital may give you individual cards, but a single sheet with all relevant contact information is much handier.
Interview to find good a good fit. Interview both a DME company and nursing agency before making selections. Find a company you feel comfortable working with. If you know your child is chronically ill and will need long-term nursing care, be sure to ask the agency if they will stay with you over the long term.
Train family/friends that will care for the child. Encourage family members and friends to go through hospital training to provide suitable backup when needed. Better yet, identify KEY people who will be in the home consistently staying up-to-date on the care your child needs and how to administer each care.
Organize vaccinations. Make sure vaccinations are up-to-date before going home and ask for a copy of the schedule to keep in your personal records.
Learn about your coverage. Learn to work within insurance limits or find other payment options. At-home insurance coverage will be different than in the hospital and there will likely be extra expenses not covered by insurance. Contact your insurance provider before discharge for specifics about in-home care for your plan.
Learn as much as you can while in hospital. Build your confidence by spending as much time as possible, including overnights, with “care by parent” under hospital staff guidance at the hospital.
Get as much sleep as possible the night before discharge. Although we mention spending overnights at the hospital in the point above, try to go home early the night before discharge and get a FULL, restful night’s sleep. Your child is safe in the hospital for one night and you will need and appreciate that uninterrupted night after bringing your child home.
Adjust medication schedules to home schedule. If the doctor has not suggested it already, ask if medication/feeding schedules can be safely rearranged to simplify the workload at home (for example, could an infant on electrolyte supplementation go from 4x/day to 3x/day or 2x/day?). While still in the hospital ask to adjust the schedules to the way it will be done at home at least one week before discharge. This will give you and your child time to acclimate.
Have your home set up prior to discharge. PHS helps families with high-tech patients sort through equipment and supplies so that you don’t come home to boxes full of unfamiliar products.
And lastly, never feel alone. PHS and the hospital staff are always there to help you through the process of transitioning to home. You can see a full list of tips like the ones above here, where we cover tips for you after you’ve arrived at home, as well as tips to reduce stress and strain on you, and your family. Do you have any other tips or thoughts that you’d like to add to the list? We know the families who have already been through the process are the real experts and we’d love to hear from you!
PHS employees, friends, partners, referral sources and patient families spent Sunday, June 24th in style at the PHS Succession Celebration where we recognized all Susan Wingert has done to bring PHS to where it is today, and eagerly welcomed Mark Hamman into his new role as our leader, the new PHS President. Held at the International Market Square in Minneapolis, MN the Success Celebration was led by our very own HR Director and wonderful emcee for the afternoon, Todd Ericson. Although he kicked off the event without his typical ceremonial joke of the day, the event went off without a hitch.
Not your typical retirement party, the Succession Celebration was designed to focus on not where we have been, but where PHS is going in the future. Our future is now being led by the very capable and able, Mark Hamman. Mark has spent the last 6 years of his time at PHS going through a formal succession plan where he has managed and worked in every single department, and pretty much every single role at PHS. An initiation so thorough has given Mark an appreciation of how integral each role is in taking care of the child, and our employees couldn’t be more excited to see where the future takes us with Mark as our leader.
The afternoon’s program was fantastic, starting off with a video showing how far PHS has come over the past 22 years and speeches from PHS partners, friends and employees. See below for videos of each of the speeches.
Longtime referral source and friend William Wheeler, MD. “The first 10 children sent home with medical dependency in MN, and Susan Wingert made it happen. Since those kids went home, there have been 800 more. This is unheard of throughout the nation.”
PHS patient family mom, Bernadette Beranrdini. “Susan and PHS have had a monumental impact on my family. Susan’s visionary thinking and gutsy doing are a testament to our eldest son nick, as a true PHS success story”
Three of the six founding PHS employees: Sandi Maguire, Bruce Estrem and Kay Kufahl. “The word thrive really embodies everything that we have done over the last years. So we wanted to take each letter in the word thrive and expand on how that relates to Susan.”
T= Technology / H= Honesty / R= Respected / I= Integrity / V= Vision / E= Excellence and Expectation
A member of the PHS Senior Leadership team and longtime friend to Susan, Judy Giel . “I was honored when given this opportunity to speak because it gives me the chance to highlight how she literally revolutionized homecare over the past 3 decades through her vision, resolve and her integrity.”
Susan’s husband, Jan Mattson. “So with a subterranean office, a pick-up truck and used Honeywell desks and borrowed money, it all began. Now when you look at it today, how many lives has this enterprise touched, and all for the better.”
The new PHS President Mark Hamman. “I’ve mentioned to many folks, that it’s the people here in this organization that make the company go, and my mom, the captain, was just the one picking the team. I want to say thank you mom for giving me this opportunity to fill your shoes and I will continue the legacy of PHS. I know with the resources you’ve given me, that won’t be a problem.”
Founder and retired PHS President, Susan Wingert. “As many tributes as come this way today, it’s my personal opinion that I deserve absolutely none of them. It’s got nothing to do with what I did; it’s got to do with what the people at PHS did.”
Thank you to everyone who attended and who has supported PHS over the past 22 years. You can rest assured that you will receive the same high-quality child focused care that you’ve grown accustomed to since the very start of PHS. See more photos from the event on the PHS facebook page here.