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Get to Know our SRH Staff: Pedro Rodriguez in Volunteer Services

Meet Pedro, an Evening Volunteer Coordinator who has been working in our Volunteer Services department for the past 3 years. Our Evening Volunteer Program is designed to provide a group activity for inpatients, siblings and family members during the weeknight evenings. Volunteers provide fun and recreation to keep the children’s minds off of their medical care and provide family-oriented activities while they’re at Scottish Rite Hospital.

Get to know Pedro in our Staff Spotlight below.

Pedro, pictured third from the right, with volunteers at Treasure Street.

What’s your favorite part of your job?

Hmm…that’s a tough one; there are so many things I love about it. I love getting to hang out and  play different games and do different crafts with our inpatients. It’s great seeing them laugh, smile and forget whatever has brought them to our hospital, even if it’s just for two hours. I love how our volunteers, no matter how busy their lives become, always make time to make huge impacts in our inpatient lives. I literally could not do what I do without them.

What’s your favorite thing about the hospital?

How inviting it is. People who work and volunteer here really do go the extra mile for our patients and their families.

What skills do you need for your job?

I think for my job, you need to be creative, outgoing, jovial, patient, have the ability to laugh at yourself and stay pretty calm. I think for the most part I hit all of those, although sometimes I can be an upside down duck.

What was your first job? What path did you take to get here?

I had my first job at 13. I worked at a country club as a waiter at the pool. I also worked at Starbucks, but I can’t recommend anything, not much of a coffee drinker. Most of my family is in the medical field in some form or fashion, I think with that influence and wanting to work with children brought me to Scottish Rite Hospital.

What is your favorite hospital-related Special Event?

I’m definitely a little biased. With the support I get from my team and the volunteers, the Evening Volunteer Program has created four hospital special events; Drive-In Movie Night, Back-to-School Carnival, Inpatient Night Parade, and our fundraising SPIKE Volleyball Tournament. Last year was our inaugural year and we raised $3,600 for Scottish Rite Hospital!

Inaugural SPIKE Volleyball Tournament hosted by our Evening Volunteers

Inaugural SPIKE Volleyball Tournament hosted by our Evening Volunteers

What’s your favorite…

  • Place to travel: Anywhere that my friends and family are.
  • Type of food: Tacos- All day, every day!
  • TV show: Who has just one? Definitely something a few seasons in so I can binge.

If you could have a super power, what would it be?

Telekinesis and Teleportation- you know, save on transportation.

What’s your spirit animal?

Panda

What is something people don’t know about you?

I played the violin for four years

What’s your go-to karaoke song?

Anything 90’s

 

To learn more about our Volunteer Program and how to apply, please visit scottishritehospital.org/volunteer.

Backpack Safety Tips

Backpacks are a popular and practical way for children and teenagers to carry school books and supplies. Compared to shoulder bags, messenger bags or purses, backpacks are better because the back and the abdominal muscles support the weight of the backpack. When a backpack is worn correctly, the weight is evenly distributed across the body so shoulder, neck and back injuries are less common.

Backpack SafetyIf a backpack is too heavy or is used incorrectly it can cause muscle joint strain and cause back pain. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children do not carry more than 10-15% of their body weight in their backpacks. For example, if a child weighs 80 pounds, a backpack should not weigh more than 8 to 12 pounds. Although backpacks can lead to poor posture when they are not worn correctly, heavy backpacks do not cause scoliosis.

Problems Backpacks Can Pose

Many different things can lead to back pain. These include increased participation in sports or exercise, poor posture when sitting and long periods of inactivity. Some children can have back pain because of a heavy backpack. When a heavy backpack is placed incorrectly on the shoulders, the force of the weight can pull a child backwards. The child then compensates by bending forward at the hips or by arching the back. This can cause shoulder, neck and back pain.

Wearing a backpack over just one shoulder, may cause a child to lean to one side. This may result in shoulder, neck or back discomfort. Backpacks with tight, narrow straps can dig into the shoulders, causing numbness, tingling or weakness in the arms. Also, a heavy backpack can cause increased risk of falling by putting the child off balance.

Choosing the Right Backpack

  • Wide, padded shoulder straps
  • Two shoulder straps
  • Padded back
  • Lightweight backpack

Injury Prevention

  • Always use both shoulder straps.
  • Pack light (10-15% of child’s weight)
  • Remove unneeded items
  • Lift properly by bending at the knees and grabbing the pack with two hands.

Adapted from American Academy of Pediatrics information on Backpack Safety, 11/2015: http://tinyurl.com/7oozzls

Karen’s Moment – Volunteer Services

02_FEB_Karen and George_BLOG

Whether it’s greeting patient families or helping behind the scenes, more than 1,000 volunteers contribute to the mission of Scottish Rite Hospital. Volunteers, like Karen are there every moment, supporting and caring for our patients like a good friend.

This month, we will be giving you a deeper look at our Volunteer Services department on our Facebook page. Join us for volunteer stories, flashbacks and interesting facts. For more information, visit scottishritehospital.org/volunteer.

A Look Inside PRiSM for Parents of Young Athletes – Sports Medicine

Scottish Rite Hospital recently co-hosted the fourth annual Pediatric Research in Sports Medicine (PRiSM) meeting. The two-day conference included discussion of various clinical cases and medical professionals were able to share innovative ideas for research to provide better care for young athletes. Co-chair of the Program Committee for PRiSM and Assistant Chief of Staff at Scottish Rite Hospital, Philip Wilson, M.D. lined up over 75 presentations by physicians, physical therapists, movement science experts, and even an expert in veterinary pathology.

The attendees represented more than 75 children’s hospitals, universities and major medical centers across the country and beyond. Here are some topics that were discussed this weekend:

  • Injury Prevention – We continue to see injuries in young athletes that are preventable. Though we work hard to identify the best ways to treat these injuries, our organizations must continue to share messages about how to prevent these. Read more here.
  • Osteochondtritis Dissecans (OCD) – A small group of attendees spent an entire day discussing current research and future plans for studies to improve the treatment of OCD in the knee, the group is known as Research in Osteochondritis Dissecans of the Knee (ROCK), you can learn more about OCD and this group here.
  • Movement Science and Return to Sports – There is agreement across the country that returning to sports after an injury is an important decision that is not based on time, we must look at how the body has recovered and whether or not it is ready for the multi-direction movements in sports. Evidence based functional tests are recommended. At Scottish Rite Hospital, we use several including the Y-Balance Test, watch a video here.
  • Sports Concussions – As we learn more and more about concussions, experts continue to emphasize early recognition and medical clearance for returning to sports. Presenters shared survey results that show we have more work to do to help parents, coaches and young athletes to be confident with their knowledge and ability to recognize signs and symptoms of concussions. Learn more about sports concussions here.

Scottish Rite Hospital Staff Chuck Wyatt, R.N., C.P.N.P., R.N.F.A., Amanda Fletcher, R.N., C.P.N.P., R.N.F.A and Lorenzo Vite, P.T.

You can read more about PRiSM and see a full program list on their website. Many of our sports medicine staff members attended and volunteered to help make the weekend a success. Events like these help us develop our team to provide outstanding care to young and growing athletes.

For information about injury prevention and pediatric sports medicine, please visit our website at scottishritehospital.org/sports.

Amputee Ski Trip Spotlight: Andria, age 14 of Leonard

Andria_BlogAndria, age 14 of Leonard (a little town northeast of McKinney), has been a prosthetics patient at Scottish Rite Hospital for a year and a half. Andria was a passenger in a car accident that ultimately took her leg. She is an active teen and is taking a heavy load of science classes at school. Her goal is to become a doctor: either a surgeon or possibly an anesthesiologist. She has her sights aimed at attending Texas A&M University and going on to medical school. Andria is excited about the ski trip and seeing all of the snow in Colorado. This will be her first trip on an airplane and the first time she has traveled outside of Texas. Andria is looking forward to meeting new friends and having a great time. She did admit that she likes her sleep but says that she will be up and ready to hit the slopes every morning!

About the Annual Amputee Ski Trip

February 2017 will mark the 36th anniversary of the annual Amputee Ski Trip, held each year at the National Sports Center for the Disabled in Winter Park, Colo. Fourteen teenage patients with limb differences receive practical recreational therapy, while also having the opportunity to grow, build confidence and bond with others similar to them.

For more information, visit scottishritehospital.org/amputee-ski-trip.

Amputee Ski Trip Spotlight: Jeremiah, age 16 of Dallas

Jeremiah_Blog2Jeremiah, age 16 of Dallas, has been a patient at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children since 2006. Due to the development of osteosarcoma in his bones, he had to have his leg amputated, and he now wears a full-leg prosthesis. Jeremiah is proud to be a cancer survivor. He enjoys being active and likes to play basketball with friends outside of school. He wants to be a mechanical engineer when he grows up. Last year, Jeremiah had two firsts on this trip: flying on an airplane and snow skiing. This year, he’s looking forward to reconnecting with old friends from the trip and learning more from his ski instructor from last year. Jeremiah enjoyed last year’s trip and is excited to go back!

About the Annual Amputee Ski Trip

Jeremiah_BlogFebruary 2017 will mark the 36th anniversary of the annual Amputee Ski Trip, held each year at the National Sports Center for the Disabled in Winter Park, Colo. Fourteen teenage patients with limb differences receive practical recreational therapy, while also having the opportunity to grow, build confidence and bond with others similar to them.

For more information, visit scottishritehospital.org/amputee-ski-trip.

Amputee Ski Trip Spotlight: Miranda, age 17 of Frisco

Miranda_blogMiranda, age 17 of Frisco, has been a patient at Scottish Rite Hospital since 2012. She is missing the fibula bone in her left leg and wears a lower leg prosthetic. Miranda enjoys babysitting and watching her favorite TV show, Grey’s Anatomy. This will be Miranda’s second time on the Amputee Ski Trip. Miranda is excited to make new friends who also wear prostheses. She also looks forward to seeing her instructor who helped her learn how to ski. Last year, Miranda had the chance to meet former Scottish Rite Hospital patient Patience Beard on the Amputee Ski Trip. Patience inspires her because she cheers and snowboards, all with her prosthetic leg. Miranda can’t wait to get back on the slopes at this year’s trip.

About the Annual Amputee Ski Trip

Miranda_BlogFebruary 2017 will mark the 36th anniversary of the annual Amputee Ski Trip, held each year at the National Sports Center for the Disabled in Winter Park, Colo. Fourteen teenage patients with limb differences receive practical recreational therapy, while also having the opportunity to grow, build confidence and bond with others similar to them.

For more information, visit scottishritehospital.org/amputee-ski-trip.

Amputee Ski Trip Spotlight: Alfonso, age 14 of Bedford

Alfonso_BlogAlfonso, age 14 of Bedford, Texas, has been treated for both hand differences and prosthetic needs at Scottish Rite Hospital since he was five years old.

Alfonso dreams of one day becoming a teacher and enjoys volleyball and playing the trombone. His prosthetist Kara Davis describes him as a “very fun-loving, active kid” and his adventurous spirit is infectious to all who meet him. Alfonso has never been skiing and is excited to learn on this year’s Amputee Ski Trip.

About the Annual Amputee Ski Trip

Alfonso Apodaca_04

Alfonso served as a Patient Champion for the Dallas Marathon in 2013.

February 2017 will mark the 36th anniversary of the annual Amputee Ski Trip, held each year at the National Sports Center for the Disabled in Winter Park, Colo. Fourteen teenage patients with limb differences receive practical recreational therapy, while also having the opportunity to grow, build confidence and bond with others similar to them.

For more information, visit scottishritehospital.org/amputee-ski-trip.

2016 – A Year In Review

2016 was a wonderful year for the hospital. Take a look at some numbers from the year.

*Numbers reflect total patients treated during our fiscal year, October 2015 – September 2016.

Dyslexia Stat Foot Disorder StatHand StatHip StatLL Stat

Spine StatSports Stat

Prosthetics Stat

VolunteerStat

Additional Milestones from 2016

  • We celebrated the hospital’s 95th birthday in October. We’re proud to have treated 269,019 patients since 1921.
  • Groundbreaking_blogOn October 19, we broke ground on our second facility in Frisco, with plans of opening in Fall of 2018. The five-story, 345,000-square-foot structure will be strategically located to fulfill a growing need for patient care in the rapidly expanding North Texas area. The campus will offer clinics and day surgeries for children with orthopedic issues and will be anchored by our Center for Excellence in Sports Medicine.
  • We started seeing patients in our Fracture Clinic in Plano. This clinic is unique because patients do not need a doctor referral to be seen.
  • We launched our electronic medical records system in the fall. Have you set up your MySRH account?
  • Our signature event, Treasure Street, raised more than $1.1 million for the patients at Scottish Rite Hospital.
  • For the second consecutive year, the National Research Corporation (NRC) recognized the hospital’s dedication to excellent patient care with two Path to Excellence Awards. The hospital was also one of two institutions to receive recognition for Most Improved Facilities – Children’s Hospitals, based on improvement over last year’s award-winning inpatient performance scores.
  • Our research and clinical team were busy in 2016 with: 141 active research projects, 172 medical abstracts presented, 89 medical articles published and 119 appearances as guest medical speakers.

Thanks for supporting the hospital this year, we look forward to 2017!

Sports Medicine MVP – Aaron

Aaron Lowenberg, 17 of Allen, says he couldn’t have played again without the expertise of Dr. Philip Wilson and our sports medicine team. In 2014, Aaron had pain in his knee that was keeping him from enjoying sports. He was diagnosed with osteochondritis dissecans of the knee and needed surgery. For some, this problem may keep young athletes from sports completely. But, our MVP just wrapped up his senior football season at Allen High School where the Eagles just made it to the Class 6A Division I state semifinals. We asked Aaron to answer a few questions and here’s what he had to say:

Photo Credit: Texas Sports Photos

Photo Credit: Texas Sports Photos

What sports have you played and when did you focus football? I‘ve played baseball since I was 5, basketball during elementary school, and football since I was 5 (Tackle when I was 8). I began focusing on football during my recovery my sophomore year. Because my recovery prevented me from playing baseball the spring of my sophomore year, I missed a critical season. Because of my size, football seemed like the best choice for me.

What was the most exciting moment for you this football season? For me, I would say being able to go and visit the elementary schools to do reading with the students and being able to connect with them like when I was younger with Reading with The Eagles.

What advice do you have for young athletes? I would have to say to enjoy what you do. Enjoy playing and the process of making it happen. Enjoy the family members that support you and the people that surround you. Because you never know when something so precious can take a sideline. I thank Scottish Rite Hospital for giving me the ability to experience football and what comes with it. With that staff of miracle workers, you are bound to succeed.

Have you ever met anyone else with Osteochondritis Dissecans? I knew someone who made it back to play football in college, so I knew if I did exactly as I should, I would have that chance, too.

Was it hard for you to explain your problem to your coaches and friends? Yes, it was very difficult explaining the injury because of the complexity. And also it was hard because I didn’t know what to expect in the beginning.

When you were released back to football, how long had you been out of the game? 9/21/15 – had been out since 8/12/14, and watched on TV as my teammates won the State Championship. I came back as a Junior through JV, and was pulled up to Varsity the final district game of the season, 11/6/15. It was incredible to get to run through the tunnel with my teammates.

Do you want to continue playing football in college? Yes, it is a goal of mine. It would be a great thing for not only getting to play the sport that I love, but getting a great education for down the road.

Since you are graduating from Allen High School in June, what are your plans next year? To go to a college to continue football and pursue my studies for a major in business and minor in communications.

Congratulations to you and your team on a great football season at Allen High School, we look forward to more success stories from you in the future!

For information about injury prevention and pediatric sports medicine, please visit our website at scottishritehospital.org/sports.