Behind-the-Scenes: When a Public Announcement Gets Personal
Once in a while, things get personal at work.
Life came full circle for me when MultiVu was asked to design and publish a branded landing page for Levine Children’s Hospital (LCH) – a place that’s like a second home to my family – to announce for the tenth consecutive year its recognition as one of the best places to care for children in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.
Not only did my team get to work on this announcement behind the scenes, but I was personally asked by our son’s physician, Dr. Susan Massengill, Director of Nephrology at LCH, to attend the press conference that would announce that seven specialties, including hers, at Levine Children’s Hospital in our home town of Charlotte, NC, had ranked among the Top 50 in the nation. The press conference started promptly at 10:30, and our project managers at MultiVu distributed LCH’s multichannel news release through PR Newswire at 10:45.
Amidst all the buzz and excitement, I felt my professional and personal lives collide as I realized the magnitude of this announcement and how it touched my family. How could I have known 16 years ago that a top-ranking children’s hospital would be at the top of my wish list when determining where to live? But it is. And I’m so grateful that it’s in my backyard.
My husband and I learned during our first pregnancy that the prognosis of our unborn son (whom we’d already named Mikey…after his Dad) was grim and would most certainly affect his kidney function. As my pregnancy wore on, the situation worsened, and we had little hope that Mikey would live longer than a few days. We prepared for the worst…to deliver a child we’d love forever and only know temporarily.
We met Dr. Massengill, whom I now endearingly refer to as his “other mom,” the day Mikey was born. The doctors in the room that day are still overseeing his care at LCH 16 years later, and they’ve seen him through over 100 procedures and surgeries, including two living related donor kidney transplants from his father and uncle. These specialists are, indeed, special – always collaborative, communicative and caring – even when times have been tough. Family-centered care is always top-of-mind at LCH with their guiding principles defined as quality of care, respect for families, family education and last but not least, partnership.
So it came as no surprise when the hospital turned this press conference into a celebration centered around the children it serves. Each of the seven specialties recognized (cancer, cardiology, gastroenterology, neonatology, nephrology, neurology/neurosurgery and orthopedics) celebrated by honoring one of their patients and presenting them with an award of their own. The most profound moment of the morning for me was when a young girl diagnosed with osteosarcoma (bone cancer) was granted permission to walk again for the first time since a femoral surgery had rendered her to a wheelchair. Aided by a walker, she proudly made it to the stage on her own two feet. The crowd went wild.
Stories shared throughout the morning were astounding: A dimple-faced 2-year girl with a head full of curls who weighed only 13 ounces at birth…”the size of a Coke can,” pronounced her physician. A teenaged boy who loves playing basketball between dialysis treatments. A seven-year-old who experienced cardiac arrest and spent both Christmas and New Year’s in the hospital while being fitted for his pacemaker.
I think the President of Levine Children’s Hospital, Stacy Nicholson, MD, summarized it perfectly when he stated, “The biggest takeaway from the rankings is that every family in the communities we serve should know that the best place for their child’s care is in their own backyard.”
I couldn’t agree more.
For more information: Multichannel News Release:
To learn more about the Levine Children’s Hospital rankings and meet some of the patients that have benefitted from some of the word-class care provided by Levine Children’s Hospital, please visit levinechildrens.org/usnews
ABOUT THE EXPERT: Jennifer Howard
Jennifer serves as Divisional Vice President at MultiVu and oversees broadcast, creative and multimedia projects for clients throughout the Southeast. She has over 20 years of strategic counsel and client management experience across multiple industries and business environments. Jennifer is a self-proclaimed people person who enjoys a fast-paced environment where every day there’s a new story to tell. Jennifer lives in Charlotte, NC, with her husband, their three children and Goldendoodle puppy. She’s crazy about the Carolina Panthers and loves “chillaxing” with her family in Hilton Head Island.
MultiVu, a Cision/PR Newswire division, produces and places compelling content strategically across multiple channels globally to deliver targeted results and drive desired engagement. Created in 2002 from network news veterans and media relations professionals, MultiVu has grown into a content creation and media strategy company, leading in the broadcast communications industry. More information can be found on www.multivu.com.