Dustin is a teen with autism. On a recent visit to the Thompson Center, his mother was completing the Return Patient Form. Among the many questions about her son’s medications and health-related concerns she found one that you don’t often find on a patient form. It read, “Tell us one GREAT thing that your child did last week!” To this she indicated that her son had helped her water the garden and carry laundry down to the laundry room. While many would see these as simple, uneventful tasks, Dustin’s mom and Nurse Clinician Shawna Mabe recognized these as great accomplishments for a young man who struggles with social interactions.
“From his mother’s comments I saw that Dustin was engaging in positive behaviors toward others,” Mabe says. “It’s great to hear about all of the good things our patients are doing.”
In an effort to recognize the accomplishments of patients like Dustin, Mabe developed the "Proud of You" postcard program. The idea behind the program is to send a postcard to a child or adult patient recognizing the positive behavior noted on the intake form.
“We want our patients and their families to know that we appreciate the good things they are doing," says Mabe. " We also want parents of our patients to know that we value the time, love and effort that they give to help their children be successful. It only takes a few minutes to tell someone that you appreciate what they are doing. That is why we began this program,” she adds.
Through the “Proud of You” program Mabe is making sure that patients, and their families, know that they are important to the faculty and staff at the Thompson Center.