A family living with congenital heart disease does not travel on this journey alone. There are so many others, including friends, co-workers and loved ones, who are ready to give the extra help that these families need.
A Family Support Team lets your family focus on your child when he or she is in the hospital or in recovery. By creating a Family Support Team before your child enters the hospital, you will be better able to prepare for the stay away from home.
Tree House: A Place for Families
When your child is in the hospital, the last thing you want to do is leave at night and make a long drive home. But when you don't live near the hospital and don't have a place to stay, sleep, even just take a shower, what are you to do? Make use of Tree House, which provides lodging for families with a patient at Mary Bridge.
Support Groups for Families of Children with Heart Conditions
We have formed a Mended Little Hearts support group in the Puget Sound area to help families that have a child with a congenital heart defect or heart disease. There is hope and you are not alone. Please join us for our monthly family meetings (usually the first Tuesday of the month from 5:30 to 7pm). Separate groups for siblings and teens are offered. Dinner, child care and parking are provided. Check the Events Calendar for location and details.
Follow Mended Little Hearts of Puget Sound on Facebook!
To RSVP, receive our newsletter or obtain more information, please email, or call Darcie Miller at 253-858-3065.
Cardiac Pre-Operative Tours and Medical Play
The Mary Bridge Child Life Department is pleased to offer pre-operative tours and medical play for children and families scheduled for cardiac surgery or cardiac catheterization.
Pre-operative tours led by our child life specialists help familiarize patients and their families with the hospital environment and minimize anxiety prior to a child's scheduled procedure. Child life specialists help alleviate children's fears by providing developmentally appropriate information through medical play and games.
Tours are available for children and families (including siblings and parents of infants) who are scheduled for cardiac surgery or cardiac catheterization. Tours can be arranged for you by your child's cardiologist or cardiac surgery team.
For questions please call Child Life at 253-403-7598.
Create a CarePage for Your Loved One
are free, private, personalized web pages available to patients and families at MultiCare facilities that help you stay in touch before, during and after a hospital stay, or any time care giving is needed. The service allows you control over communication and provides an easy way for friends and loved ones to respond with messages of support.
Internet Resources for Families
There are many good websites you can visit to get even more information on children's heart care, from diagnostic procedures to treatments to support resources. Here are some of our favorites:
Mary Bridge Children's Heart Center
American Heart Association
Children's Hospital & Health System of Wisconsin
Children's Mercy Hospitals & Clinics
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center
Circle of Hearts (Congenital Heart Information Network)
Congenital Heart Defect Online Handbook
Congenital Heart Defects (Texas Heart Institute)
Congenital Heart Defects (Cardiopatías congénitas) (Texas Heart Institute) - en Español
Congenital Heart Disease Screening Program (CNMC)
Congenital Heart Information Network
Hypoplastic left heart syndrome - video (CHOP)
Jamie's Heart Foundation
MedlinePlus Health Topics: Congenital Heart Disease
Mended Little Hearts - Puget Sound WA support group
Single ventricle - video (CHOP)
Tetralogy of Fallot - video (CHOP)
Transposition of the great arteries - video (CHOP)
Mary Bridge Children's Heart & Chest Center
Loma Linda University Children's Hospital - pectus excavatum
University of California, San Francisco Children's Hospital - pectus excavatum repair
University of Southern California School of Medicine, Cardiothoracic Surgery - patient's guide to lung surgery
Atrial septal defect
Going to the Doctor
Going to the Hospital
How Stitches Help Kids Heal
Mitral valve prolapse
What Happens in the Operating Room?
What Medicines Are and What They Do
ACC Adult Congenital Heart Disease Passport
Anesthesia - What to Expect
Heart & Circulatory System
Lungs & Respiratory System
Questions to Ask Your Doctor
Talking to Your Doctor
Types of Anesthesia
Understanding Medications and What They Do
What's It Like to Have Surgery?
What's It Like to Stay in the Hospital?
Whether a fictional story about a child going to the hospital, a true account of a family's experience with pediatric heart problems, or a clinical reference guide — can be very helpful. We think you'll find the following book selections to be a great source of information and inspiration.
Infant to preschool
Corduroy Goes to the Doctor by Don Freeman
Going to the Hospital by A. Civardi Miffy in the Hospital (Miffy Series) by Dick Bruna
Pooh Plays Doctor by K.W. Zoehfeld
Pump the Bear by Gisella Olivo Whittington
School age 4-8Big Operation: The Busy World of Richard Scarry
by Richard ScarryCurious George Goes to the Hospital
by H. ReyFranklin Goes to the Hospital
by Sharon JenningsGoing to the Hospital
by Fred RogersThe Hospital Book
by James HoweLet's Talk about Going to the Hospital
by M. JohnstonMatty's Heart
by Cath Jean Clabough, RNMy Doctor, My Friend
by P.K. HallinanOne Bear In The Hospital
by C. BucknallThis is a Hospital, Not a Zoo
by R. KarimWhy Am I Going To The Hospital?
by Claire CiliottaSchool age 9+Christiann Barnard and the Story of the First Successful Heart Transplant
by John BankstonThe Heart: The Questions and Answers Book for Kids
by J. Willis HurstMatty's Heart: A Child's and Parent's Guide to Open Heart Surgery
by Jean Clabough, RNA Night Without Stars
by James Howe (Age 9 to adult)Robert Jarvik and the First Artificial Heart (Unlocking the Secrets of Science)
by John BankstonYoung People and Chronic Illness: True Stories, Help and Hope
by Kelly HuegelFor teensKara Mia
by Maryann AnglimOvercoming Challenges: Congenital Heart Defects: Life After Heart Surgery
by Melissa CurnelFor siblingsBecky's Story
by Donna BaznikMy Brother Needs an Operation
by Anna Jaworski (Ages 4-8)When Molly Was In The Hospital: A Book for Brothers and Sisters of Hospitalized Children
by Debbie Duncan (Ages 5-10)For parentsAdvice to Doctors and Other Big People from Kids
by Gerald Jampolsky, MDBrothers, Sisters, and Special Needs: Information and Activities for Helping Young Siblings of Children with Chronic Illnesses and Developmental Disabilities
by Debra J. LobatoCardiovascular Diseases and Disorders Sourcebook: Basic Information about Cardiovascular Diseases and Disorders
by Karen BellenirCongenital Disorders Sourcebook: Basic Information about Disorders Acquired During Gestation
by Karen BellenirGrowing Up Strong
by Mary BurkettHeart Defects In Children: What Every Parent Should Know
by Cheryl J. WildThe Heart of a Child: What Families Need to Know About Heart Disorders in Children
by Edward B. ClarkThe Heart of a Mother
by Anna JaworskiKing of Hearts: The True Story of the Maverick Who Pioneered Open Heart Surgery
by G. Wayne MillerMatty's Heart: A Child's and Parent's Guide to Open Heart Surgery
by Jean Clabough, RNOne Step At A Time
by Jennifer SmithThe Parent's Guide to Children's Congenital Heart Defects: What They Are, How to Treat Them, How to Cope With Them
by Gerrie Freid KramerPractical Suggestions For Raising A Child With A Heart Problem
by Lisa Swanson, RNTo Mend A Broken Heart
by Kathy SloanYour Child in the Hospital: A Practical Guide for Parents
by Nancy KeeneYou Will Dream New Dreams
by Stanley D. Klein, Ph.D.