1. What is your position and role at Gillette? I work at the new Minnetonka Therapies Clinic as a physical therapist assistant. I have been at Gillette 11 years! Do you have a favorite story or memory? I have just enjoyed the many years of being with those who work at Gillette, in particular those at the Minnetonka Clinic. We have been a close knit team whose focus and desire is to give quality care to the patients and families we serve.
2. What are some of your hobbies outside of work? Well, these days I am busy with my 9 year old son, Breckyn and 6 year old daughter, Norah. They keep me running. I do like a good book, but takes me a while to usually finish. Love working in the yard and being outdoors.
3. Do you have any children or pets? Our family (husband Brett, son Breckyn and daughter Norah) love playing with our dog, Juno! She is a lab/terrier mix and loves to lick and jump and play catch with tennis balls.
4. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go? Hmmm… really anywhere! Time away from the daily chores is always welcomed no matter where I am! If I had to choose, I would pick somewhere somewhat remote and not bring my cell phone to disconnect from the world for a while… and I would bring my family with!
5. What is one fun fact about you? I am a 19 year survivor of leukemia! I have been a part of the wellness team since it’s existence. I will be doing my first individual triathlon this summer!
Thanks to a generous small business owner and a grateful patient family, children receiving surgery at Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare will receive a fun surprise during their hospital stay — their very own pair of adorable Bison Booties!
Bison Booties creator Erica Hager of Bismarck, N.D., was inspired to donate the booties after hearing about Gillette from her cousin, Kendra Bachmeier. Kendra’s 15-month-old daughter, Cambria, began seeing pediatric orthopedic surgeon Tom Novacheck, M.D., after her parents noticed she walked with a significant limp. She was soon diagnosed with hip dysplasia—her left hip is dislocated completely—and came to Gillette for corrective surgery in April.
“Many children on Gillette’s orthopedic unit, like Cambria, are in body casts for weeks after surgery,” says Kendra. “Bison Booties have been awesome for her to wear during this time! The nurses even mentioned how ideal they are for kids in the hospital.”
After returning home to Bismarck, Kendra told Erica that she’d like to purchase 10 pairs of Bison Booties for Gillette patients. But Erica provided them free of charge instead—and took it one step further. She gave her customers the opportunity to purchase a pair of booties for a child at Gillette, promising to match each donated pair. “She truly went above and beyond!” says Kendra.
Thanks to Bison Booties customers throughout the U.S. (even Alaska!) Erica donated 36 pairs of the one-of-a-kind shoes to Gillette. Kendra and Cambria, who returned to Gillette last week for a follow-up hip procedure, presented them personally.
At 6 years old, Elijah Brummond does everything a normal kindergartener would, from running and jumping to practicing tae kwon do. He does all of this using a prosthetic leg. Elijah’s foot and part of his leg did not fully develop while in-utero, the result of a condition called fibular hemimelia. When Elijah was a baby, his parents decided to have doctors at Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare amputate the affected foot. Then, when he was just 1 year old, Elijah got his first prosthetic, giving him lifelong independence and mobility.
As a school-aged child, Elijah’s classmates often express curiosity about his prosthesis. And, like any 6-year-old, Elijah also has questions himself. To help educate Elijah and his classmates, his mother worked with Gillette prosthetist Michelle Hall, CPO, FAAOP, to organize a one-of-a-kind field trip to experience how prostheses and orthoses (braces) are used and made. During the April 24 field trip, the students were able to do things such as trial a myoelectric prosthetic arm, make a plaster mold of their thumb and foot, walk in prosthetic legs, and take a tour of Gillette’s Assistive Technology Department, where the prostheses are made.
As April was Limb Loss Awareness Month, it provided a perfect opportunity to raise awareness about amputees and the importance of prosthetics. It also gave the children a glimpse into Elijah’s life as an amputee and how he uses his own prosthetic leg. Students had a great day—especially Elijah, who led the way for his classmates.
1. What is your position and role at Gillette? I am a Registered Nurse in the Neurosciences Unit.
2. Do you have a favorite story or memory from Gillette? Hosting prom on our unit for one of our patients.
3. What are some of your hobbies outside of work? I enjoy golfing, jogging, playing trumpet in a community band and spending time with my family and friends
4. Do you have any children or pets? Not yet, although my husband is campaigning for us to get a pug named Leon.
5. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go? Italy
6. What is one fun fact about you? I played trumpet with my now husband in the benchwarmerz for a summer in college (a small band that walks around and plays goofy and popular songs at Valleyfair).
Mark Your Calendar for Sunday, May 5
Sunday, May 5, will be a great day for a bike ride—regardless of the weather! Make plans now to attend the Adapted Bike and Sports Expo sponsored by Gillette and Courage Center.
You’ll have a chance to:
- See and test ride the latest adaptive hand cycles, bicycles and trikes
- Participate in adaptive rock climbing and ropes demonstrations
- Learn about adapted recreation offerings in the Twin Cities
It’s fun. And it’s free!
One person looking forward to the event is Tony Mliner, who has cerebral palsy. He hadn’t ridden a bike since he was a child—until he came to Gillette Lifetime for physical therapy. “We saw the bikes in the therapy room and it piqued his interest,” says Cindy Kreidler, Mliner’s aunt. “He rode through the whole therapy room with a smile on his face.”
The benefits of biking are numerous, particularly for people who have disabilities. “It will give him mobility, allow him to exercise, and help him meet people,” Kreidler says. Mliner says he hopes to increase his strength, core stability, balance, and reaction time.
“Because of my disabilities, I need a special bike that has been adapted for me,” he says. “Then I can ride successfully, safely and with greater independence.”
At least eight bike vendors will attend the expo this year, giving families a variety of bike options to try. “If you’re looking for an adapted bicycle for yourself or your child, I highly recommend this event,” says Krista Ash, Gillette therapeutic recreation specialist. She and other Gillette staff will be on hand to answer questions and introduce the most appropriate vendors for each situation.
Because insurance typically doesn’t cover sports equipment, Mliner and his family are planning a fundraiser for May 18. Gillette therapeutic recreation specialists can help Gillette families learn about grants and other funding options
12th Annual Adaptive Bike and Sports Expo
Sunday, May 5, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Fort Snelling Base Camp
For more information, contact Krista Ash at 651-312-3138 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Finding the right words to explain an upcoming surgery to your child can be difficult. Surgery can be a stressful time for both children and parents. In fact, it is estimated that between 50 and 75 percent of children undergoing surgery develop significant stress and anxiety in the days leading up to surgery.
Fortunately, many studies have shown that adequately preparing your child before surgery can help decrease their stress and anxiety. According to one recent study, children who underwent preparation for their surgery, including tours and information provided in a developmentally appropriate format, were less likely to have anxiety before surgery and were more likely to report a positive surgery experience.
To help you and your child prepare for an upcoming surgery, we’ve created a child-friendly “Planning for your Surgery” video. This video will walk you and your child through the steps that will occur when you come in for your surgery. It stars an actual Gillette patient and current Gillette staff members in their day-to-day roles. You can view the video here: Preparing for Surgery at Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare
If you have questions about your upcoming surgery, contact our Pre-Op department at 651-229-3918 or 1-800-719-4040. If you would like to schedule a pre-surgery tour of our hospital with a Child Life Specialist, please call 651-229-3855.
Kain, Z.V., Mayes, L.C., Caldwell-Andrews, A.A., Karas, D.E. & McClain, B.C. (2006). Preoperative anxiety, postoperative pain, and behavioral recovery in young children undergoing surgery. Pediatrics, 118(2), 651-658.
Perry, J.N., Hooper, V.D. & Masiongale, J.(2012). Reducation of preoperative anxiety in pediatric surgery patients using age-appropriate teaching interventions. Journal of Perianesthesia Nursing, 27(2), 69-81.
About the Author
Cheryl Tveit, RN, MSN, CAPA, is a PeriAnesthesia nurse at Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare.
- What are some of your hobbies outside work? I play drums, mostly for fun, occasionally for money. One of my groups (Goodnight Ritual) is releasing an album in June!
- Do you have any kids or pets?
I have one son; Eli, who is 21 years old. Also, I have two kitties: Lu and Corky, and a Ten month-old Puppy named Willie Nelson that we got from a rescue shelter in October, 2012.
- If you could choose a superpower, what would it be? If I could, I’d be flying all over.
- What is your favorite book? A tie between Lord of the Rings and The Music of Failure by the late, great Minnesota native Bill Holm
- What is your favorite food? The kind that is raised with respect, kindness and much thought.
- If you could travel anywhere where would you go? Touring through the pyramids of the world would be pretty sweet!
- Favorite subject in school? From grade school through college, I’ve always loved my science classes.
- Favorite musician/band/type of music?The cerebral part of me loves classical guitarist Andres’ Segovia, the rocker in me loves Led Zeppelin (particularly the drummer, John Bonham) Why choose, right?
- Who did you admire when you were a kid? My Mom and Dad.
- Do you have a favorite story/memory from Gillette? I remember a patient that was stable, but not happy at all. A surgery had been done that left the patient’s eyes swollen shut, and it seemed I could do nothing to help. When I DID NOT hear the patient crying, I became concerned and went to the room, only to find that the patient, finally happy, watching ‘Dora the Explorer’ with fingers physically prying open one eye!
- What do you enjoy most about your job at Gillette? I love developing long-term relationships with patients and their families. Soaring with them through the victories, helping to support them through tough times and long stays, while being invited into some of the most fulfilling conversations imaginable. I am also graced to have the best group of co-workers I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with.
The Department of Education recently released a mandate stating that students who have disabilities should receive an equal opportunity to participate alongside their peers in after-school athletics and clubs. The Twin Cities and surrounding suburbs already have some amazing programs for children, teens and adults with disabilities, and this new mandate helps open the door even more.
The importance of involvement in sports, recreation and social opportunities at a young age is vital. Children between the ages of 4 and 6 years are actively learning the social skills that impact their whole lives. Participation in sports and recreation activities can benefit children of all abilities by promoting the development of leadership skills, sharing, conflict resolution, and, of course, physical fitness.
Participation in sports at a young age is important for kids who have disabilities, too. Many friendships and bonds are formed through youth sports and social opportunities. Kids get to interact with other kids who share similar interests. Additionally, active children are more likely to mature into physically active adults. Best of all, getting moving is fun!
For more information, visit the Therapeutic Recreation webpage or contact Child and Family Services at 651-229-3855.
By: Jennifer Laine, M.D.
This week’s wintry weather leaves most of us Minnesotans thinking fondly ahead to spring—and wishing we could do something to speed its arrival! Unfortunately, in other areas of the country, warmer temperatures recently brought horrific news of a lawnmower accident that badly injured a Florida toddler.
As a pediatric orthopedic surgeon, stories like this are especially difficult because I see, firsthand, the consequences such injuries can have on children. Although it takes just seconds for an accident to occur, children often struggle with the aftereffects for a lifetime.
A lawnmower blade’s damage to still-developing bones and growth plates can put children at risk for limb-length discrepancies and permanent orthopedic deformities. As we just saw in Florida, children can also lose their limbs entirely.
Whether Minnesotans believe it or not, spring—and mowing season—IS just around the corner. That’s why I hope you’ll take a moment to read these important safety tips, and review them with your loved ones. Serious injuries are, fortunately, 100 percent preventable. Let’s work together for a fun, and a safe, mowing season.
Who Should Mow?
- Children should be at least 12 years-old before operating any lawn mower.
- Children are at least 16 to operate a riding mower.
Before You Mow
- Keep children indoors while mowing.
- Never allow a child to ride on a riding lawn mower with the operator.
- Pick up stones, toys and debris from the lawn to prevent injuries from flying objects.
- Never allow children to play on a lawn mower, even if it is turned off.
- Never mow barefoot – wear shoes, not sandals.
- Use eye and hearing protection.
- Only use mowers with automatic shutdown abilities, such as those with a control that stops motion when the handle is released.
- Don’t mow in reverse.
* These safety tips are based on the American Academy of Pediatrics’ policy statement, Lawn Mower Injuries to Children.
What are some of your hobbies outside work?
Sports and video games. I love to watch all sports on TV, but the one I actually still play is volleyball. I was a collegiate volleyball coach for 7 years before entering the world of training. I was a setter in college and play in city leagues. I still play video games…until my wife scolds me.
How long have you worked at Gillette? Do you have a favorite story or memory?
I have worked at Gillette since June of 2012. When I was hired, my background was in adult learning and software training. I had no medical background. Since QCPR was a major focus of my job, I shadowed several physicians. Dr. Tenner Guillaume was the first to allow me to shadow him. Seeing how caring, passionate, and focused he was with the many families and children we saw was very inspiring. That experience really made me realize the impact we can have at Gillette. I know it made me more focused of the work I do, and appreciative of the opportunity I have at Gillette.
Do you have any kids or pets?
I have two boys. Jack is 2 ½ and Max is 5 months. I completely love playing with them and being a dad. I also have a 9lb dog named Doug!
If you could travel anywhere, where would you go?
I worked for 7 summers in Alaska, and while there met people from all over the world. The Australians that I met painted one beautiful picture of their home. I have always wanted to go. I was also an Art major in college, so Italy would be a dream to see so much of what I studied.
What is your favorite food?
Italian and Mexican are by far my favorite cuisines. I could easily live on pasta, pizza, enchiladas, and quesadillas.