All posts by Judith McLean

Child life specialists are trained professionals with expertise in helping children and their families overcome life’s most challenging events.  They do this through play, preparation, and education. The child life program at Almost Home Kids at OSF HealthCare Children’s Hospital of Illinois is an integral part of the overall care and well-being of each child that comes to Almost Home Kids. By facilitating play opportunities, at the bedside and in playrooms, their continued growth and development is greatly enhanced.

The sisters have generously donated an interactive robotic seal to the Child life program at Almost Home Kids!  This gift has been found to reduce patient stress, stimulate interaction between patients and caregivers, improve patients’ relaxation and motivation and improve the socialization of patients with each other and with caregivers

It moves, makes noise, and responds to voices.  It is really cute and Ben loves it!

We recently featured in several recent Architectural and Design trade articles:

Stantec’s design of a transitional care home for children with complex medical conditions recently came to life with the opening of Almost Home Kids at OSF HealthCare Children’s Hospital of Illinois in Peoria, Illinois. Almost Home Kids helps children with complicated medical needs transition safely from the hospital into their home and educates families on how to care for their children in a comfortable, supportive environment.

Based on an operational model designed with best practices and lessons learned from two existing Almost Home Kids sites affiliated with the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, Almost Home Kids and Stantec embarked on the development of a prototype building for partner organizations looking to adopt and implement this first-of-its-kind transitional care model within their communities.

OSF HealthCare Children’s Hospital of Illinois, the third largest pediatric hospital in Illinois, partnered with Almost Home Kids to realize the first implementation of this national prototype. This partnership engaged Stantec to assist in the design, medical planning, and interiors for the new 22,000-square-foot space. Throughout the design and site adaptation process, Stantec teamed up with a panel of Almost Home Kids clinicians and families to ensure that the feeling of coming home was embodied throughout every aspect of the house.

“This is much more than just a project for us,” said Rebel Roberts, principal designer at Stantec. “It’s a positive healing space and a comforting home where families feel relieved and welcome. We hope this prototype continues to get adopted and we see more Almost Home Kids facilities throughout the country, because they truly are remarkable.”

Replicating the comforting home-like setting of all AHK facilities, children at Almost Home Kids at OSF HealthCare Children’s Hospital of Illinois receive 24-hour medical and nursing support from skilled pediatric nurses. Almost Home Kids educates families on how to provide the best care for their children by training them to confidently operate and maintain their child’s home medical equipment, prepare medications and treatments, and maximize government support systems such as home modification and/or obtaining home nursing hours.

The newest Almost Home Kids is located at 5200 N Hamilton Rd, Peoria, IL 61614.

For Stantec, health is at the center of who we are and what we do. Made up of 3,500 building professionals in 200 locations, our health sector design team members live and work locally, accessing colleagues who are working around the globe for fresh and informed input. Our teams are supported by our company-wide proprietary health research, experience in lean design, and expertise in alternative delivery systems.

About Stantec
Communities are fundamental. Whether around the corner or across the globe, they provide a foundation, a sense of place and of belonging. That’s why at Stantec, we always design with community in mind.

We care about the communities we serve—because they’re our communities too. This allows us to assess what’s needed and connect our expertise, to appreciate nuances and envision what’s never been considered, to bring together diverse perspectives so we can collaborate toward a shared success.

We’re designers, engineers, scientists, and project managers, innovating together at the intersection of community, creativity, and client relationships. Balancing these priorities results in projects that advance the quality of life in communities across the globe.

Stantec trades on the TSX and the NYSE under the symbol STN.

Night Shift RN Openings at Almost Home Kids (Naperville & Chicago)

General Summary of Position Responsibility
The Registered Nurse delivers patient care in a home-like setting by performing patient assessments and documenting medical histories and vital signs. This role utilizes the nursing process and performs responsibilities in five areas of nursing practice: clinician, clinical inquiry, teacher, professional development and leadership. Responsibilities also include patient/family education and instruction during visits, performing telephone triage and other activities as assigned. Understands and integrates into the delivery of patient care the needs of neonatal, pediatrics, adolescent and adult patients in regard to their growth and development process.

Essential Job Functions:

  1. Performs nursing assessments utilizing a variety of assessment methods and/or area-specific tools.
  2. Individualizes existing plans of care and develops goals relative to family needs. Evaluates and documents changes to the plan.
  3. Develops or individualizes teaching plans/protocols to meet patient and family learning needs. Identifies patient preferences and needs including motivation to learn. Evaluates and documents changes to the plan whether that be in the Electronic Medical Record or in the paper chart.
  4. Performs nursing care according to procedures/protocols. Anticipates impending emergent situations and intervenes effectively.
  5. Communicates with the family and members of the multidisciplinary team to identify health care needs. Communicates changes in patient status. Utilizes appropriate resources for referral or consultations.
  6. Keeps up to date in nursing practice by utilizing current nursing and healthcare literature for information and problem solving.
  7. Incorporates current hospital and departmental quality initiatives into daily activities.
  8. Adheres to communication, service excellence and professional image standards that support the hospital mission and philosophy.
  9. Identifies learning needs and seeks resources to advance nursing practice and achieve professional goals.
  10. Performs job functions adhering to service principles with customer service focus of innovation, service excellence and teamwork to provide the highest quality care and service to our patients, families, co-workers and others.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Bachelor’s degree or higher in Nursing required.
  • Current licensure as a Registered Nurse in the State of Illinois and CPR/BLS certification required.
  • At least 1 year nursing experience required, but pediatrics preferred.
  • Ability to effectively communicate with patient/families, physicians and hospital staff.
  • Basic computer skills required.

There are night shift positions available at both sites (Naperville and Chicago). Please contact Amy Galetti, Director of Nursing, for more information or to apply: AGaletti@luriechildrens.org

Giving Tuesday is November 27, 2018.  It’s described as a “movement” in philanthropic circles to encourage early giving to kick off the holiday season.  It occurs after Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday.  Please mark your calendar for this important day.

On 11/27, please give at http://give.almosthomekids.org/GiveNow

The Coleman Foundation is matching any gift to Almost Home Kids over $175 made online from November 1, 2018 through November 27, 201 and on 11/27, Skender Foundation will match gifts of any amount.  Don’t miss this opportunity to double your impact!

 

Join the AHK Team!
Nurse Educator at Almost Home Kids

General Summary of Position Responsibility
Fosters a learning environment and coordinates educational activities to achieve and advance the clinical competency and professional development of patient care staff.

Essential Job Functions:

  1. Coordinates area orientation designed to achieve the clinical competency of staff. Assesses clinical reasoning skills of staff and provides learning opportunities to advance clinical competencies, critical thinking, and decision-making skills of staff.
  2. Fosters interdisciplinary learning opportunities with the delivery of patient care and fosters staff decision-making in the context of the healthcare continuum.
  3. Fosters the development of leadership, teamwork, and customer service skills. Assesses the learning needs of staff and reviews performance improvement data to provide educational activities which meet the needs of staff and achieve expected family care outcomes.
  4. Employs a variety of interactive teaching strategies.
  5. Evaluates the outcomes of orientation and educational activities in collaboration with staff, clinical, administrative and educational leaders. Revises learning activities based on results of evaluation.
  6. Serves as a clinical resource for patient care staff. Mentors and actively facilitates the clinical and professional advancement of staff. Coaches orientees and guides staff to appropriate resources to achieve performance expectations.
  7. Serves as a role model and facilitates research and scholarly activities. Links staff to expert sources of knowledge. Actively fosters staff utilization of research findings in clinical practice.
  8. Provides consultation to leadership regarding systems for clinical competency and ongoing professional development of staff. Participates in the development and attainment of clinical goals and objectives. Conducing quality audits as required.
  9. Maintains the documentation and record keeping system in compliance with organizational and external agency requirements.
  10. Participates in outreach education to advance pediatric clinical practice in the professional community.
  11. Performs job functions adhering to service principles with customer service focus of innovation, service excellence and teamwork to provide the highest quality care and service to our patients, families, co-workers and others.
  12. Responsible for tracking, reporting, and improving clinical quality metrics.
  13. Other job functions as assigned.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • A Bachelor of Science or Arts degree required. Master’s degree in area of clinical specialization and/or education preferred. Licensed in area of clinical practice.
  • Three or more years of clinical experience preferred.
  • Possesses effective teaching skills.
  • Ability to assess and respond quickly to patient care situations. Ability to effectively communicate with patients, families, physicians, and hospital staff. Ability to operate and move audio/visual equipment from location to location.

Please contact Amy Galetti, Director of Nursing, for more information or to apply: AGaletti@luriechildrens.org

After several years of planning, collaborating and construction, Almost Home Kids at OSF HealthCare Children’s Hospital of Illinois, is finally a reality and opened its doors in October to children with medical complexities and their families living in Central Illinois. More info on the first children and families to enjoy this amazing new Almost Home Kids will be posted soon.

In the meantime kudos goes to everyone who put in the hard work to see this project through, and loads of thanks to the many donors and supporters that stepped up to make it happen.

Of course, as with all Almost Home Kids, we rely on the ongoing support of the community and the generosity of individuals, local businesses and corporations to see our programs continue to thrive – for more information on how to support Almost Home Kids in Peoria, or any other questions you might have about career opportunities or volunteering, please email Jen Shinnick the Site Director at Jennifer.L.Shinnick@osfhealthcare.org

The romance and glamour of Paris was on full display at the Drake Hotel on October 26, 2018 as we celebrated our seventh annual Share the Care Ball, An Evening in Paris. Co-Chairs, Suzi Bramson Brooks and Jen Horsley, along with their talented committee, treated guests to an unforgettable Parisian experience as guests perused our silent auction, enjoyed French themed entertainment and danced the night away.

Our heartfelt thanks to Paige Richards for giving  a  very special parent testimonial and to Rebel Roberts and Grant Thornton for being very worthy awardees. Special thanks to all the amazing sponsors, our very generous attendees, our amazing committee members, our fantastic pro bono photographer Laura Brown, our auctioneer Nick Combs and all the many fab volunteers, and the incomparable Ken Arlen of Arlen Music Productions. Leslie Hindman Auctioneers, Grant Thornton US, Corboy & Demetrio, First Midwest Bank, Brown Brothers Harriman & Co., McKinsey & Company, Burdi, Greenridge Farm, Cotter Construction, Stantec, Polsinelli, The Bensman Group, United, MERGE Chicago, Meetinghouse, SpeedPro Chicago Loop, Vin Chicago, CS Modern Luxury, Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, OSF Children’s Hospital of Illinois, Neuco Inc.

Photo from the event are posted here.

We won, we won, we won!  Thanks to you, AHK tallied enough votes to win $24K of Solid Good from Baird Warner’s Good Will Network.  Their contribution is earmarked for Emergency Respite Care in Chicago or Naperville.  We really appreciate the extra effort everyone put forth to make this happen, over 800 votes of the total number [3,000] were cast for Almost Home Kids, and we were one of five charities chosen to receive the donation.

About The Good Will Network
Everyone at Baird & Warner takes pride in being part of something bigger – part of a community that works together to make Chicagoland a better home for everyone. The Good Will Network was created in 2002 to help those who need it most, with a focus on sheltering women and children.
Baird & Warner donates millions of dollars and thousands of volunteer hours to nonprofits. Each time an agent sells a home or a Key Mortgage Services loan is processed, a donation goes directly to The Good Will Network. We also match contributions our employees make through their payroll contributions.

#B&W #GoodWillNetwork

This year our signature Chicago gala will have a Parisian flair as we enjoy our 7th annual Share the Care Ball at the historic Drake Hotel. Please join us for dining and dancing to benefit  Almost Home Kids at the Share the Care Ball, an Evening in Paris.

When: October 26th at 6:30 PM
Where: The Drake Hotel
Featuring the Ken Arlen Orchestra

This years award honorees are:
Share the Care Champion: Rebel Roberts and Distinguished Donor: Grant Thornton

Featured Live Auction Item: Paris – The City of Lights
Business Class flights for two to Europe aboard United Airlines, Three Nights in Paris at the Hotel InterContinental Paris Le Grand, French Culinary Lessons at La Cuisine Paris, Private Tour of the Museum of Impressionism in Giverny, and Admission for Two to the Monet House

Tickets are $350 each – click here to reserve yours now!

For sponsorship information, please contact Liza Larsen at elarsen@almosthomekids.org

The official ribbon cutting for the brand new Almost Home Kids at OSF HealthCare Children’s Hospital of Illinois took place recently and is the precursor to the actual opening – when children will be admitted – on September 24th, 2018!

We are thrilled to see all the many months (and years) of planning come to fruition in the form of a beautiful new home close to the hospital, and convenient for families in the Central Illinois area.

With 12 private rooms, and ample space both inside and out, this Almost Home Kids not only looks great, but will be very functional for the clinical staff and very comfortable for the kids.

Kudos goes to everyone who put in the hard work to see this project through, and loads of thanks to the many donors and supporters that stepped up to make it happen. Of course, as with all Almost Home Kids, we rely on the ongoing support of the community and the generosity of individuals, local businesses and corporations to see our programs continue to thrive – for more information on how to support Almost Home Kids in Peoria, or any other questions you might have about career opportunities or volunteering, please email Jen Shinnick the Site Director at Jennifer.L.Shinnick@osfhealthcare.org