JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FOR SAM HOUSTON, Texas –
The Brooke Army Medical Center Auxiliary held its annual Welfare Recognition Ceremony at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston May 11. This year, the welfare committee approved 15 grants and four emergency requests totaling more than $24,000 to help support patient care at BAMC.
“It’s really special to be here with you today,” said Army Col. Kimberlie Biever, BAMC commander. “I really want to thank you for all of your efforts and raising the spirits of our staff members, patients and families. Everything you do is all for the positive. I can’t thank you enough for what you do."
Grant recipients received funding for a variety of items including patient education materials, toys and stickers for pediatric patients, and clothing for patients in need.
"Our welfare committee prioritizes grants that directly impact patient care and education," said Sarah Krell, BAMC Auxiliary president.
This year the Mother and Baby Unit requested stand-alone tubs that enable immersion swaddle bathing for infants.
“This is one I am particularity excited about,” Krell said. “Because it will make BAMC the second military hospital to use this immersion bathing for its infants. There is not only research that shows immersion bathing more beneficial for the infant, but also allows for the teaching of families on how to properly bathe newborns.”
Some of the other more unique requests were a treasure chest for pediatric patients in the Emergency Department, a neonatal intubation training manikin for the Simulation Center, and a special stuffed animal designed by the American Childhood Cancer Association for children with cancer.
“The Cozy Cat toy allows patients to have a friend that can go through these experiences with them,” Krell explained. “Cozy has strategically placed patches that represent port access, bone marrow aspirate, spinal tap, etc. With Cozy as a guide, a child can see where a particular procedure will take place, and they can even watch Cozy have the procedure first. This can greatly ease anxiety and fear related to certain aspects of treatment.”
Krell thanked the Auxiliary Welfare Committee and Board for their efforts over the past year.
“They have put in countless hours fundraising, serving, traipsing around the hospital to deliver a boost of morale; sitting in meetings and choosing to give their time to make sure the Auxiliary not only survived, but thrived,” she said. “We would not be here today if not for each of them.”
The Auxiliary president also thanked the staff members who took the time to fill out the grant applications.
“It is truly amazing to see the diversity of these requests and the many different ways our military medical providers are going above and beyond, including taking the time to fill out these requests,” Krell said. “The BAMC Auxiliary stands in awe of what you do and we are humbled to have the opportunity to support your efforts.”