News & Media

Hospital provides special meal for families of NICU patients

Published on November 17, 2016 | Category: Uncategorized

By Alan Shope

The Thanksgiving holiday is all about giving and that’s what HCA Health Midwest did at its four hospitals in the Kansas City metropolitan area Thursday.

“People usually ask when he’s coming home and the hardest part is, we don’t know yet,” said Stacy Hadel, a Gardner, Kansas, mother.

Her son was born premature on Sept. 19 and is still in a hospital.

“It’s a roller coaster ride some days,” she said. “You have really good days and there’s always a bad day.”

More than 100 former premature patient families volunteered to share a meal with families still dealing with preterm births.

“We know that it’s stressful, so (we’re) just trying to take a minute of that stress away,” said Stacey Sales, the mother of a former patient.

The dinner has been a tradition for the past nine years. The Missouri Mavericks have helped make it happen.

The families who got to enjoy the meal said it was especially important this time of year.

“It doesn’t feel like it’s a holiday when your baby is in the ICU and you’re scared,” said Sarah Hunt Arkell, the mother of a premature boy.

“It’s a journey, you know, and it’s not always pleasant,” said Jessica Charpentier, the NICU Director of Overland Park Regional Medical Center.

They’re hoping the Thanksgiving meal will help everyone sleep a little easier.

About 10 percent of the babies born in the United States are born premature.

To watch the video and see the original article on KMBC’s website, click here.