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16 reasons to become a Champion of Hope for Phoenix Children’s Hospital

At KTAR News 92.3 FM and Arizona Sports 98.7 FM we are proud to champion the Give-A-Thon for Phoenix Children’s Hospital; it’s one that we hold near and dear to our hearts.

Over the years we’ve met hundreds of patients whose bravery and hope inspire us to do more, to work harder, and motivate us to reach as many people as we can with their stories.

Last year, KTAR and Arizona Sports’ audience helped the event set a new record by raising $1,469,269.

Those wishing to donate can call 602-933-4567 during the Give-A-Thon or donate online.

In its 16th year, here are 16 reasons why you should become a Champion of Hope.

Reason #16 

Who knows better what Phoenix Children’s needs than the patients themselves? PCH was the first hospital to create a Children’s Advisory Board. Based on their own unique perspective and personal experiences, the members (current and former patients and siblings) ensure that Phoenix Children’s makes decisions that will have the most positive impact on other patients.

Reason #15

Phoenix Children’s serves as the indispensable regional provider of high acuity care for patients with medically complex conditions like cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy, cerebral palsy, congenital heart defects and many other diseases. The number of medically complex children is growing at a rate of about 6 percent each year, according to the Children’s Hospital Association. In addition, the severity of patients at PCH has continued to increase. Since 2009, the percentage of patients that have either Major or Extreme Severity of Illness has risen from 20 percent to more than 33 percent — a full one-third of PCH patients. One of those patients is Isaiah. Watch his story.

Reason #14

Today, more than 80 percent of children diagnosed with cancer will survive. Each year, more than 300 kids and teens will learn they have cancer at Phoenix Children’s alone. Each day, more than 90 are treated in the hospital’s Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders. Phoenix Children’s has nearly 160 open cancer studies, and is the only pediatric cancer treatment center in Arizona offering Phase 1 clinical trials. In fact, more than half of their patients with cancer participate in life-saving clinical trial research. What’s more, the Chan Soon-Shiong Children’s Precision Medicine Institute at Phoenix Children’s Hospital serves as the epicenter of the nation’s largest childhood cancer initiative, making PCH leaders in the fight against childhood cancer. Bruce is currently battling cancer. Watch his story.

Reason #13

It’s hard for some adults to be hospitalized. Imagine being a child and spending days, weeks, or sometimes months at a hospital. At Phoenix Children’s, child life specialists work with each and every patient, helping them cope with their diagnosis and treatment. Using medical play and other age-appropriate techniques, they coordinate activities, special visits for the kids and oversee playrooms and the Child Life Zone — complete with air hockey, billiards, a gaming suite and even a movie theater!

Reason #12

It’s estimated that 5,000 Arizona youth are homeless, while thousands more at-risk infants, children and adolescents are in need of basic medical care. Since 2000, the Hospital’s Crews’n Healthmobile staff has hit the Valley streets providing free examinations, immunizations, mental health screenings, medications to homeless and at-risk kids, teens, and young adults.

Reason #11

Who needs a scientist to tell us that dogs help reduce depression, anxiety, chronic pain, and blood pressure? Indeed it’s a proven fact. That’s why pet therapy dogs make their own rounds at Phoenix Children’s every day!

See how they helped Braden.

Reason #10

Research is the key to better diagnose, treat and ultimately find cures for the diseases that afflict children. That’s why research is a priority for Phoenix Children’s. Nearly every specialty at the hospital is engaged in research, collaborating with and sharing data with institutions worldwide on nearly 400 open research studies. With a better understanding of disease we can help them achieve their ultimate goal…to translate what we learn to the bedside care of their patients.

Reason #9

We all know that Phoenix Children’s is a class act. But did you know they have their own school? Because patients can spend weeks, months and in some cases, years at PCH, their 1 Darn Cool School helps them keep up with their classwork, and also provides a much-needed outlet for patients to meet and socialize with other kids. Phoenix Children’s is one of the few hospitals in the nation to employ its own Master’s level teaching staff, working with children in the classroom and bedside. The school also offers a summer camp program, school prom and even an annual back-to-school dance!

Reason #8

Providing care for the most complex medical problems in children requires a very sophisticated hospital system that can provide all the services necessary. Last year Phoenix Children’s performed nearly 16,500 surgeries. But oftentimes the surgery pales in comparison with the pre- and post-operative care that is necessary. It takes a very special hospital like Phoenix Children’s to do that properly. Did you know that in 2009 conjoined twins were separated at PCH?

It was a surgery that lasted more than 17 hours and included a team of more than 20 doctors and nurses.

Reason #7

The Children’s Heart Center at PCH provides the Valley’s only Pediatric Heart Transplant Program. Meet Oliver, a Phoenix Children’s patient who was the youngest child in the U.S. to ever receive a heart transplant.

Reason #6

When it comes to treating kids, there’s a tremendous difference between adult and children’s hospitals. Pediatric physicians are better trained and equipped to deal with the specific issues children face.

• Nine out of every 10 children are taken to hospitals that don’t have the right equipment or staff to provide pediatric care. From child-sized needles to instruments sized for children of all ages, most hospitals are not fully prepared to care for children.

• Kids and adults are physically different and require different medical knowledge and equipment. If a doctor treating a child uses adult medicine as the point of reference, there is a bigger risk that something might go wrong.

• Pediatric hospitals better understand how to recognize the difference between fear and pain in children. They have the skills to alleviate fear, helping to avoid unnecessary medication.

• A doctor who sees kids day in and day out has probably seen enough cases of common childhood illnesses to know instantly what’s wrong. Pediatric experts are also more likely to have seen even the rarest diseases and illnesses a doctor who works mainly with adults may not see in an entire career.

• Illnesses and symptoms vary based on age and size of a patient. For example, having a child with RSV can be very serious, even leading to respiratory failure. An adult with RSV just has mild, cold-like symptoms.

Reason #5

Last year, Phoenix Children’s treated 161,485 patients. And they never turn a child away. In fact, they are the single-largest provider of pediatric services to low-income children in Arizona. In 2014, Phoenix Children’s provided more than $27 million in charity and uncompensated care.

Reason #4

With 75 subspecialties offered and 433 beds, PCH is the sixth largest children’s hospital in the nation. In Arizona they are the only facility to offer a:

• Neuro-NICU program
• Pediatric Stroke Program
• Pediatric Heart Transplant Program
• Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Center
• Pediatric Hemodialysis Program
• Kidney Transplant Program
• Maternal Fetal Medicine Program

See how the hospital’s Neuro-NICU saved Anthony’s life.

Reason #3

Within the next five years, one in four Arizona children will have received care from a Phoenix Children’s provider. That includes nearly 83,000 visits to their Emergency Department each year. The hospital is currently building a new Emergency Department and Trauma Center to accommodate the growing number of children who need their services. See how the trauma team helped Javonte.

Reason #2

We have The Best in our own backyard! For the sixth year in a row, Phoenix Children’s Hospital was placed in the U.S. News & World Report’s Best Children’s Hospitals rankings. In fact, they were ranked in all 10 categories that are evaluated by U.S. News – one of only 25 hospitals in the country to earn that distinction. Those rankings place Phoenix Children’s in very rare company, among the elite children’s hospitals in the nation — and reflect the growing quality and reputation of Phoenix Children’s premier clinical programs.

Reason #1

Because Your Donations Matter! Community support is critical for Phoenix Children’s. When you become a Champion of Hope you’re helping to fund research, create and grow much-needed clinical programs, purchase state-of-the art equipment and technology, provide charity care, and ensure that the best and brightest physicians are available for our very own children. You’re giving hope to patients like Hope.

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