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A Look Inside Soliant’s 2018 Most Beautiful Hospital in the U.S.

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The thought of undergoing surgery is scary enough for an adult. Imagine what it’s like for a child. Stark white walls, cold empty hallways, and cramped waiting rooms are far from healing. As patients, a “home away from home” experience is what we want but it’s not always what we get. The people of Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida are doing everything they can to make this experience a reality for children and their families.

What some may consider bells and whistles are just the essentials for Golisano: large televisions and gaming consoles in each room, iPads loaded with kid-friendly games and programs for patients to use, and sleeper sofas so that parents and caregivers can stay the night with their child. Not to mention, all patient rooms are private and designed in a way that nurses can supervise through windows, limiting both noise and interruptions.

“We encourage family-centered care by providing private rooms, including in the NICU. We also have a Ronald McDonald Family Room, which provides free on-the-go meals as well as free laundry services to families,” said Anna Stephanz, BS, CCLS, Certified Child Life Specialist at Golisano. “If a patient is hospitalized during their birthday or a holiday, our child life specialists create a celebratory environment for them.”

Upon arrival at Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida, children are greeted with a stuffed animal.  When they get to their rooms, after admission, they get to choose the color of the LED light that lines their windows. Anyone driving by the hospital at night is treated to an ever-changing color pattern, specifically designed for them by the children receiving treatment at Golisano, with in-room LED lighting controlled by the children.

Golisano is more than a place where children get treated. It’s a place where children can feel empowered – where they get to choose. Before surgery, children can choose between four Power Wheel cars as their mode of transportation into the operating room. These cars are more than a novelty – they help ease young patients’ anxieties during separation from their parents.

On top of that, patients get to choose the style and color of their surgical cap. This is the product of a 22-year strong initiative called “Sew Angelic™” created by the caregivers at The Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida (now Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida) more than 20 years ago. Through these keepsake caps, perioperative nurses can connect with young patients and help ease their fears. The hats made by Sew Angelic™ have made an incredibly positive impact on patients’ surgical experience to the point that children start looking for their caps upon admission.

From the creators of Sew Angelic™:

“The universally recognized symbol of a nurse is a cap, yet most nurses shed their caps long ago. Perioperative nurses, however, have retained a cap of sorts; our distinctive surgical caps. Through the Sew Angelic™ program, we share the surgical caps that symbolize our continued dedication to compassionate nursing care.”

“The children don’t choose to get sick or to come to the hospital. They do get to choose their surgical cap, the color of the bandage around their IVs, and how they enter the operating room, whether through a wagon or a racecar,” said Sandi Falk, BSN, RN, CNOR, co-creator of the Sew Angelic™ program.

In the most difficult of situations, Golisano has made every effort to allow kids to be kids, to help them cope, and to put their parents at ease. We couldn’t be more excited to name Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida as Soliant’s 2018 Most Beautiful Hospital in the U.S.

Take a virtual tour of Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida here.

Click here to learn more about Soliant’s Most Beautiful Hospitals in the U.S.

Already have a 2019 Most Beautiful Hospital in the U.S. nomination in mind? Click here to submit yours today.


My Special Nursing Moment 2016

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There are close to 4 million nurses in the United States. And, chances are,  each one has that special nursing moment he or she will never forget.

Think of your first, your current, or your last job as a nurse. What moment made a true impact on who you are today? For the third year in a row, we’re asking nurses to share their Special Nursing Moments with us in honor of National Nurses Week 2016.

By sharing your special moment in a comment below, you’ll be automatically entered to win a $100 SpaFinder gift certificate for some much needed me-time!

Soliant Health proudly celebrates National Nurses Week, May 6-12.


Heartwarming Soliant Special Nursing Moments from years past:





My Special Nursing Moment 2015 Winner!

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Year two of Soliant’s My Special Nursing Moment Contest is in the books! What an honor it is to hear heartwarming stories about care from the ultimate caregivers themselves: nurses! This year, we were especially moved by the more than thirty moments we received, each bringing us to that point in time, where a special bond was made,  where special words were spoken, or where a special silence was shared between nurse and patient.

Congratulations to Kim Stafford, RN for her winning Special Moment of 2015. Read it below:heartwarming-nurse-story

“When I worked as an ADON in long term care, I made some great friends — not just my co-workers but my residents and their families. One particular woman who made my day every day with her smile and her perfectly coordinated outfits was such a friend. She knew all about the comings and goings of the facility, asked about your children, and loved them to come visit. She was a sweet soul with a ton of spunk at her age of over 90. She walked the halls every day and always said hello to everyone. One particularly sad day, she suddenly fell ill. And when I say suddenly, I mean RAPIDLY. We later came to figure out she had an abdominal aortic aneurysm that dissected. I was called to the unit to assess her and knew right away her time was short. I had helped her complete her advanced directive some months before so I knew that if this happened, she didn’t want to go to a hospital and wanted to remain in her room with comfort measures. When I entered the room all she could say was ‘Kim. Sick. Dying. Don’t go.’ And I honored that wish. We were able to get emergency orders for meds for comfort and I never left her side. I held her in my lap while she left us, and I know that I provided her with exactly what we discussed those months ago. She left us with dignity without pain and with the comfort of her nurse, her friend with her the whole way. After she was gone we all cried for a long, long time. She left a big void when she passed, but she always taught us, “Chin up buttercup, it always gets better,” and it did. But I think to this point in my career despite the patients I have successfully coded, the lives I have helped save in the ER since then, I still call this day and this experience my best day as a nurse.”

Thank you, nurses, for sharing your special moments with us. It may only take a few words to express your passions, but what you shared with us spoke volumes of why you chose this path. We are so glad you did!

Happy Nurses Week from all of us at Soliant!


So You Want to Become an OT?

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If your passion is helping people achieve a better quality of life, then you’re on the right track considering a career in healthcare. Nurses, doctors, pharmacists, and other healthcare professionals share this same passion, but there are few occupations that truly make it possible for people to achieve independence and enjoy life to its fullest. One of those is occupational therapy.

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School Psychology FAQs

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Most of us have a general understanding of what a psychologist does: provide mental health care. But did you know that there are more than 56 different divisions of the American Psychological Association? In the U.S. alone, there were 160,200 reported psychologist jobs in 2012, a majority of which were clinical, counseling, and school positions. Speaking of schools, psychologists working in schools are called, well, School Psychologists. Here are few frequently asked questions about this fast-growing healthcare profession: 

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Speech Therapy Activities So Lovely & Sweet

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Love is in the air… but your Valentine’s Day-themed lesson plan shouldn’t be! On today’s post, we’re sharing our favorite Valentine’s Day speech therapy ideas that don’t require too much time or effort to prepare. Did we mention that they are available for FREE? Makes them that much sweeter, doesn’t it?

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