Autism Awareness: A Better ER Experience at St. Elizabeth

Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals in Southeast Texas is a proud supporter of Autism Awareness. In honor of Autism Awareness month, we are highlighting how CHRISTUS Southeast Texas St. Elizabeth goes the extra mile when it comes to making pediatric patients on the autism spectrum as comfortable as possible.

Ashley Bares, Certified Child Life Specialist at CHRISTUS Southeast Texas St. Elizabeth, describes what she and the healthcare team have to offer when a pediatric patient visits the Emergency Room.

“When registering at the Emergency Room, parents of children on the autism spectrum can ask for an ASAP (Autism Spectrum Awareness Plan) or SNAP (Special Needs Awareness Plan) form,” explains Bares. “Each form asks a variety questions to help us better understand the patient’s needs and preferences. Once filled out, the form is reviewed and attached to the patient’s chart where all healthcare team members have access to it. These forms make us aware of the challenges some patients face when they come to the Emergency Room so that we can do our best to make the

m comfortable. If a parent indicates that their child has specific sensitivities, our healthcare team has access to several resources that can help. We can offer sunglasses for light sensitivity, fidget toys to keep their hands busy, and a weighted lap pad for those who find comfort in deep touch pressure.”

Donations made to Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals in Southeast Texas go toward helping St. Elizabeth provide specialized resources that allow children with special needs to have a more comfortable hospital visit. When our pediatric patients are comfortable during medical tests and procedures, it reduces their stress levels as well as the stress levels of their families and our healthcare team. Low stress levels during and after procedures help our youngest patients have a faster healing process and allows them to return to their normal activities sooner. Thank you to our community for allowing us to serve every patient who walks through our door with the best medical care possible and thank you for choosing your local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital, CHRISTUS Southeast Texas St. Elizabeth.

Coming soon to pediatrics: Vecta Sensory Station

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.