By Craig Reger
“Of course I was given a room with a window that doesn’t open up”. Olivia May Reger, Mays Window. Olivia is my special needs daughter. We wrote a book together musing on life, liberty and the pursuit of Olivia’s next healthy breath. Found on Amazon, for those willing to journey down a philosophical voyage of non-cloying introspection.
I once asked an intensive care nurse in Philadelphia why the windows in our daughters hospital room don’t open. The answer I was given….bugs would get in. Recently, I posed the same question to our nurse at the new Oishei Children’s Hospital, where my daughter Olivia was the very first patient this past week. Her answer, some weirdo will jump out, or children may throw items out the window. http://galleries.buffalonews.com/default.aspx?id=9484#/22
My wife and I have visited many hospitals around the world with our daughter Olivia. In our travels we have met brilliant medics, caring nurses, happy janitors and angry cafeteria clerks. It takes a special human being to be a nurse in a pediatric intensive care unit. None are more special than the nurses who worked at the old Buffalo Women’s and Children’s Hospital that has now morphed into the new Oishei Children’s Hospital of Buffalo. I would be guilty of soliciting unwanted applause and embarrassment if I named the nurses who put every conceivable thought into my wife and Olivia’s comfort and care before during and after the transition to the new Oishei Hospital. If you have children, I hope you never see the wonderfully decorated interior, the state of the art pediatric intensive care unit and the red November sunset across Lake Erie from the 9th floor through a large window that doesn’t open. When entering our new room at OCH, I immediately sought out the parents sleeping arrangements. Indeed an upgrade from the old hospital fold out chair with cement cushions softened with embedded nails. The comfortable new fold out bed should help the raging back and hip pain on the rare night my wife allows me to stay with Olivia. Luxury it is not, comfortable it is, and I must say thank you for thinking of the Mom’s comfort.
The new hospital has wonderful client and parent amenities that make the old hospital look and feel like a horse and buggy vs. a Tesla Model S, and I have not even mentioned the parking convenience that planners must be blushing over. But, that is not what makes OCH an asset to Western New York, I can say with unequivocal certainty that if the employees didn’t come over in the moving trucks and ambulances that the Oishei planners would have missed the point of what patient care is all about.
If I could buy stock in OCH, I would. I just would have bought more if the windows opened.