Back to articles

Ukiah Valley Medical Center Provides Important Emergency Services Education to Local Preschoolers

Community Needs

UKIAH, CA  --  Emergency Room staff from Ukiah Valley Medical Center made a special trip to the Ukiah Co-op Nursery School to talk to 4 and 5 year old preschoolers about their health and wellness as well as to familiarize them with ambulances, paramedics and EMT workers. This event encouraged an increased comfort-level and familiarity in the children with the various supportive functions of local medical teams and equipment and helped the children learn how to react in an emergency.

Tiffany Gibson, wellness director at UVMC, says, “We thought it would be great to educate the children about what they might experience in the hospital. Our goal is to reduce fear and anxiety for young children who may be brought to the hospital for care or who may have a family member at the hospital.”

Gibson continues, “Events like this get the kids talking about and being aware of their health, which is a keystone to promoting long term health and wellness in adults.”

The Ukiah Co-op Nursery School is thrilled about the educational support provided by UVMC. Susie Newman, director of the Ukiah Cooperative Preschool says, “My curriculum changes every year and, right now, we are doing an entire module on our bodies and health. It is important that children learn about the important care that is provided at the hospital, as well as ways to stay healthy.” 

For the most part, very little has happened to these youngsters to require a hospital visit or trip in an ambulance, but if it does happen, these kids know they are in good hands.

Newman continues, “The more children experience in the world, the less fear they’re going to have. And the knowledge they are getting – how to listen to their lungs and their heart, how to bandage a wound, is very important.”

Tasha Hesman, RN, director of acute care services at UVMC, seconds that emotion, “Helping kids understand that the ER is not a scary place for children to go and to understand what we’re doing, that we’re here to help them, is the best part of my job.”

“My child has had seizures in the past, and has had to ride in an ambulance, so this is important to us.  It can be scary, so this activity demystifies it a bit. Also, with all the flashing lights and sirens, what more could you want as a 4 year old?” Julie McGovern, mother of a 4-year-old preschooler, laughingly shares.

UVMC extends their gratitude to Verihealth for providing the ambulance that supported this special opportunity to serve local children.

The Emergency Room at Ukiah Valley Medical Center is located at 275 Hospital Drive in Ukiah. For more information about Emergency Services, please call 707-462-3111.

Pictured are: Tasha Hesman, RN, Director of Acute Care Services  at UVMC, Lindsey Spencer, UVMC ER Director, Susie Newman, Director Ukiah Cooperative Preschool, Daniel Low, Paramedic at VeriHealth, and Preschoolers at Ukiah Co-op Nursery School.

--  UVMC  --

Ukiah Valley Medical Center is part of Adventist Health, a faith-based, nonprofit integrated health system serving more than 75 communities in California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington. Our workforce of 31,000 includes more than 22,350 employees; 4,800 medical staff physicians; and 3,850 volunteers. Founded on Seventh-day Adventist heritage and values, Adventist Health provides compassionate care in 20 hospitals, more than 275 clinics (hospital-based, rural health and physician clinics), 15 home care agencies, seven hospice agencies and four joint-venture retirement centers. Adventist Health ranked #10 in Becker's list of the largest nonprofit hospital systems in the U.S. for 2015.  Visit www.uvmc.org  for more information.