Going Above and Beyond

By Robin, a Children's National parent and grandparent

I brought my daughter Melissa to Children’s National Hospital in 2004 with a heart problem. She was 16. It was a rough time for our family. She had Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, which causes dizziness and shortness of breath.

Electrophysiologist Dr. Jeffrey Moak was calm and patient. He wouldn’t give up on her. He explained everything. I was scared when we learned that Dr. Moak would use a new type of equipment to perform the procedure she needed, but he had earned my trust. He said the new technology would enable Melissa to recover more quickly. He froze a tiny portion of her heart to remove an extra electrical pathway. He was right. It wasn’t long before Melissa was back to being herself and enjoying a typical teen life again.

About 15 years later, we were back at Children’s National. Melissa’s son Justice, then 17 months, had a serious intestinal blockage. We both knew that Children’s National was the best place for him to be, even though we lived an hour and a half away. He was hospitalized for 5 months. We watched those awesome doctors figure out every complication, just like they had for Melissa. When he felt good, the nurses would take him for rides in a red wagon and bring him out to the Healing Garden to play with bubbles or splash in the fountain. June, a wound care specialist, made sure Melissa went home an expert in caring for Justice. Just like his mom before him, everyone at Children’s National worked to get him back to being a kid.

A young patient at Children's National Hospital.

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A young patient at Children's National Hospital.