Allies in Battle
November 20, 2015 | Rose Bowl
“All the doctors were coming in, and in my heart I was going … what kind of doctor are we going to get?” says Carrie Richardson. She remembers the concern as her daughter Peyton started treatment at Texas Children’s Hospital. “Are we going to get the best of the best? Are we going to get someone who cares and who’s not going to treat her like just another child with cancer?”
Texas Children’s Cancer Center is the largest center of its kind in the country. The director of the center, David Poplack, M.D., says, “Even though we see a large number of patients, we try very hard to make sure that every patient and his or her family feel like they’re the only patient and family we’re treating.” It didn’t take long for the Richardsons to find the truth in that philosophy.
The Best Place to Be
“Every doctor that came in was so empathetic and so kind. And the nurses were so gentle and loving with her; that was what changed us and made us feel like we were in the best place to do whatever we could to get her through this,” says Carrie.
Peyton says she remembers being treated like she was in charge of her body right from the start. “They let me sign my own papers. When I was in the hospital, they asked my parents and me if we wanted to be on this trial, but then the doctor looked at me and said, ‘Well, you’re most important; are you OK with it?’ And I got to sign the papers because it’s my body, it’s me,” she says.
The Richardsons now do anything they can to show gratitude to their allies in battle. They give hugs and bake treats, and Carrie says most of all they want them to know how much they are appreciated.