Prisma Health Children’s Hospital—Midlands welcomes first facility dogs
Mirabel and Duke specially trained to provide comfort and support to children in the hospital
Prisma Health Midlands Foundation and Prisma Health Children’s Hospital—Midlands are excited to welcome Mirabel and Duke, the hospital’s first facility dogs. The new furry team members are part of the new Midlands’ Paws for Peds Program, an animal-assisted therapy program for patients and their families.
Mirabel and Duke are expertly trained to help children cope with medical situations; procedures and diagnoses; and overcome the stress that they may experience during a stay at the hospital. They also provide love and support to patients and their families.
Both golden retrievers, Mirabel and Duke arrived at Children’s Hospital after completing specialized training with their handlers, who are certified Child Life Specialists at the hospital.
“They are trained to come into Children’s Hospital and alleviate anxiety and help patients cope,” said Christy Fink, Manager of Child Life and Special Programs at Prisma Health Children’s Hospital—Midlands. “They’re also able to demonstrate medical procedures for our patients to make them more comfortable, like showing them what to expect during an MRI or CT scan.”
The Michael J. Mungo Foundation donated $50,000 to Prisma Health Midlands Foundation, making it possible for Children’s Hospital to adopt its first two dogs.
“We know facility dogs can provide important medical benefits. We also know they can provide a child with confidence, security and general well-being — not to mention the simple joy and healing touch they bring to young patients.”
During Mirabel and Duke’s “Welcome Paw-ty” on Wednesday, the Mungo family surprised the Foundation and Children’s Hospital with an additional $50,000 donation to the program.
Mirabel and Duke are on Instagram! Follow them at @midlandspawsforpeds.