North Texans Give Back: Texas Health Community Offerings Get a Boost on North Texas Giving Day

In 2011, Chris and Amy Skaggs welcomed their precious babies into the world. Their babies –twins – were born prematurely and admitted to Texas Health Plano’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Sadly, three weeks later their daughter, Leighton, died. Her brother, Jaxon, came home after 74 days in the NICU.

But from this tragedy, something beautiful was born: web cameras that are placed in small Texas Health NICU beds so parents can be more connected with their babies even if they cannot be with them in the NICU all day. Parents can watch their baby from any computer or handheld device through a secure log-on, which can be shared with family and friends. For parents who have to return to work or take care of other children, these cameras allow them to stay connected to their tiny, new bundle of joy.

“When you have a baby in the NICU you miss out on a lot of the firsts,” said Chris Skaggs. “You’re not able to give the first bottle or bath so we wanted to do something for other families so they could see their babies and experience milestones even when they couldn’t be there.”

The Skaggs’ dream was to add web cameras in the NICU at Texas Health Plano, but thanks in part to Texas Health Resources’ 365 Fund, that dream is an even bigger reality as cameras have been added in NICU beds across the Texas Health system of hospitals.

But that’s not all the Texas Health 365 Fund does.

The 365 Fund supports what Texas Health has identified as the greatest needs of those in need across North Texas, whether inside the walls of the system’s hospitals, outpatient facilities and clinics or in the communities the nonprofit system serves. In addition to the NICU web cams the 365 Fund provides funding for programs including:

  • Texas Health Wellness for Life Mobile Health Unit
  • Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE program)
  • Indigent Pharmacy Fund
  • Veteran’s Recognition Program

“At Texas Health, we provide exceptional care when people need us,” said Laura McWhorter, vice president of the Texas Health Foundation. “We take care of the whole patient and their families – mind, body and spirit”.

And on Sept. 14, all North Texans will have an opportunity to give to the 365 Fund through the Communities Foundation of Texas’ North Texas Giving Day. In just two years, this 18-hour giving event has raised more than $550,000 for the 365 Fund to reach beyond the hospital walls and into the community.

All donations to the 365 Fund are also eligible for bonus funds since the Communities Foundation of Texas matches dollar for dollar. In recent years, money from the 365 Fund has meant 167 additional health screenings for underserved women within the community or four additional web cams within the NICU to provide comfort to those families who can’t be at the hospital with their newborn.

“We’re committed and proud to be a part of the fabric of our communities we’re privileged to serve,” McWhorter added. “Texas Health is ‘all in’ in North Texas.”

Hear more about this initiative by listening to our podcast at www.texashealth.org/outloud.

How to Donate to the Texas Health 365 Fund on North Texas Giving Day:

  • Request a credit card form by calling the Texas Health Foundation at 682-236-5200.
  • The Communities Foundation will allow donors to schedule a gift between Sept. 7-13 at www.NorthTexasGivingDay.org .
  • Be a part of the fun on Sept. 14 from 6 a.m. to midnight by making a donation online at www.NorthTexasGivingDay.org .

 

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