All in a Day’s Work: A Look Inside Seattle Children’s Urgent Care

Dr. David Wang provides care for 15-month-old Serigne at Seattle Children’s

Throughout this season’s viral surge, Seattle Children’s Urgent Care team has been hard at work caring for a high volume of patients throughout its four locations in Bellevue, Everett, Federal Way and Seattle.

The sites are open 7 days a week, including holidays, and recently expanded their reach by offering virtual urgent care services to all children across the state of Washington.

“We’re excited to be launching another way to access Seattle Children’s urgent care team, especially at this time where there’s so much demand and a need for our services,” shared Dr. Jay Santos, medical director for Urgent Care at Seattle Children’s, in an interview with KAPP News.

The Urgent Care team at the main Seattle location has also been busy with a move to a larger space within the hospital and has expanded its hours of service.

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Jumping into the New Year with Healthy Coping Skills

2023 is the Year of the Rabbit, symbolizing courage, kindness and good fortune. While specific celebrations vary across Asian cultures, including Vietnam where they’ll welcome the Year of the Cat, many practices emphasize family and reuniting with relatives.

The new year is also a great time to recommit to healthy habits — and try some new ones. This year, in addition to focusing on physical health, your family might want to set some goals to boost your mental and emotional wellbeing.

On the Pulse shares some helpful ideas from the latest edition of Good Growing to get you started.

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Jesse’s Full-Circle Connection to Seattle Children’s

PART FIVE: From witnessing exceptional care and compassion given to children in their own lives, to receiving treatment first-hand, this weekly series features Seattle Children’s employees and the life experiences that drove them to pursue careers in healthcare.

Jesse Giordano was a pediatric patient at Seattle Children’s three decades ago and is now part of its dedicated workforce

During a family vacation in 1993 at Lake Chelan, WA, 12-year-old Jesse Giordano started experiencing severe flu-like symptoms and extreme pain in his left arm.

“After a couple days holed up in the motel, my mom took me to an area emergency room,” Giordano said. “Other than confirming I had a fever, they told me to follow up with my primary care provider.”

That Monday morning, the family did just that. Giordano was given a blood test and then went home to wait for the results.

“We got a phone call later that day or early Tuesday directing us to Seattle Children’s immediately,” he recalled. “I was not super worried, but my mom was an absolute wreck.”

The family arrived at Seattle Children’s for the appointment in an area now called the Ocean zone.

At the appointment, doctors conducted a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and found something concerning.

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Healthy Sleep Habits for School-Age Kids

As featured in Good Growing

Studies consistently show that less than half of all school-age kids get enough sleep most weeknights. While the most recognized consequence of inadequate sleep is daytime sleepiness, children commonly manifest their sleepiness as irritability, behavioral problems, learning difficulties and poor academic performance.

Some sleep disruptions are normal and are connected to age-related changes. Others are symptoms of an actual sleep disorder. Whatever the reason, sleep problems can affect the entire family and should be accurately diagnosed.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children ages 6 to 12 get between 9 and 12 hours of sleep each night, and that teens get 8 to 10 hours. Quality sleep provides immense benefits and children who regularly get enough sleep have healthier immune systems and better overall mental health. Additionally, they have sharper memories and better behavior, which are key to success in school.

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Ringing in the New Year with Positive Reinforcement

The new year is an ideal time for parents to renew their commitment to using positive reinforcement with their children.

Positive reinforcement includes specific and immediate praise when spotting a child doing something kind or helpful.

 

For example, using phrases like:

  • “Your bedroom looks amazing, thank you for putting all your clothes and toys away!”
  • “Thank you for trying all the different foods on your plate without me asking.”
  • “I appreciate how patient and generous you’re being with your little sister right now.”
  • “Thank you so much for brushing your teeth without me asking you!”

This kind of approach is also particularly beneficial if the action is the opposite of a problem behavior that a parent or caregiver is trying to reduce. When encouraging a new behavior, it is important to offer specific praise as much as possible, as it may help a child learn how to better manage their stress and frustration. It is a logical tool that teaches and strengthens the behaviors we want to see.

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‘The Fight of My Life’ | How Becky Found a Lifelong Passion After Battling Childhood Cancer

PART FOUR: From witnessing exceptional care and compassion given to children in their own lives, to receiving treatment first-hand, this weekly series features Seattle Children’s employees and the life experiences that drove them to pursue careers in healthcare.

Natalie Jean Ahrens (left) helped care for Becky Greenway when she was a pediatric patient at Seattle Children’s

In 1991, Becky Greenway was a 17-year-old student facing chronic knee pain throughout her senior year of high school.

“My pain was worse at night and the only way I could get any relief was by soaking it in the bathtub,” she recalled.

Greenway sought care from several primary care doctors who provided varying diagnoses, including tendonitis, growing pains and a possible mental disorder.

“This fourth doctor couldn’t find any reason for my pain, so he was convinced it was all in my head,” Greenway explained.

Feeling exasperated, Greenway’s mother pushed forward, certain that the root of her daughter’s pain was something more serious.

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Why ‘Home for the Holidays’ Holds a Special Meaning for Harper’s Family

Harper and mom Meagan celebrate Christmas at Seattle Children’s

As many families prepare for their annual holiday celebrations and family gatherings, this year’s plans look very different than last year for 3-year-old Harper and her parents, Meagan and Josh.

In 2019 just a few months before Christmas, Harper was transported to Seattle Children’s on an emergency flight from Yakima, Wash. after blood tests in a local emergency room revealed she had leukemia, a cancer of the blood.

At a mere five months old, the diagnosis that their child had acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) was both shocking and devastating to Harper’s parents, but they took comfort in knowing that she was in the best hands possible with a team of experts in Seattle Children’s High-Risk Leukemia Program.

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No Distance Too Far; How Johanna’s Unique Experience Drove Her to Healthcare

PART THREE: From witnessing exceptional care and compassion given to children in their own lives, to receiving treatment first-hand, this weekly series features Seattle Children’s employees and the life experiences that drove them to pursue careers in healthcare.

Top: After receiving treatment at Seattle Children’s for chronic pain and arthritis, Johanna celebrated her 15th birthday. Bottom: Today, Johanna and her husband, Carlos.

Seattle Children’s has been part of Johanna Sánchez-Vargas’s life since she was 13 years old. Her family immigrated from Guerrero, Mexico to a small agricultural town in the Yakima Valley. There, the family planted roots and started working as farmworkers.

Throughout her childhood, Sánchez-Vargas experienced chronic pain and arthritis, and was treated in Seattle Children’s Rheumatology Program for spondyloarthropathies, a group of inflammatory diseases of the joints and areas where tendons attach to bones. It typically affects the lower part of a child’s body, including the hips, knees and ankles.

“Predominantly, I had persistent pain that hindered my ability to walk,” she said. “As a kid, I struggled with being visibly disabled. I remember going through the halls of my middle school with my wheelchair and feeling isolated for being different.”

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Little ‘Legend’ With Rare Facial Condition Travels Almost 5000 Miles for Life-Changing Surgeries at Seattle Children’s

7-year-old Loui Legend Heath Herriott was born with Treacher Collins syndrome

Located just under two hours from London in South East England is the coastal city of Brighton, home to a 7-year-old child who is truly living up to his name.

Loui Legend Heath Herriott was born with Treacher Collins syndrome, a rare genetic condition that affects the development of bones and tissues in the face, and occurs in about 1 in 50,000 newborns worldwide.

Though the severity of this syndrome varies from child to child, impacted areas often include the cheekbones, jaws, ears and eyelids, and children often have problems breathing, swallowing, chewing, hearing and with speech.

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Feeling Blue? What Parents Should Know About Seasonal Sadness in Kids and Teens

Winter can be a blue time of year for people of all ages, particularly as the days get shorter, darker and colder. These ‘winter blues’ can include feeling seasonally sad, irritable or fatigued, and can sometimes cause a decline in mood and motivation.

While it’s normal for all children to experience emotional ups and downs, including the winter blues, at least one in five kids will have a diagnosable mental health problem that needs treatment.

“People have high expectations around the holidays,” said Dr. Elizabeth McCauley, associate director of Seattle Children’s Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine. “And sometimes those expectations are too high for what the holidays will bring. You get a mental image that things are supposed to be perfect, like in a story book. But the reality can be more down to earth.”

Here are some supportive ways that parents and caregivers can help their child or teen cope this winter, while staying alert to the signs and symptoms of mental health concerns that require expert care.

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