Philanthropy-powered services foster creativity and happy memories during cancer treatment

Looking across the grassy plains Aile, 7, spots a family of elephants taking a drink at their local watering hole. As they turn a corner, her mom Taryn points out the pack of lions taking an afternoon nap. Aile smiles as her mom wheels her around and around the halls of Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital to discover more wildlife.

Aile began chemotherapy in May 2022 after a bone marrow biopsy determined she had acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL).

“It just happened so fast,” Taryn recalls. “Within

Mary Bridge Children’s empowers mom to advocate for her child with rare diagnosis

The emergency room is the last place you want to find yourself with a newborn, but that was Sean and Caitlin Keely’s reality when their son Iann was just 5 days old and refusing to nurse.

“In the back of my mind I had this ‘mom intuition,’ and I knew something was wrong,” Caitlin recalls. “I was syringe feeding him to try to get him to take in calories. On day four, I woke him up to feed him and he spit up and there was a little tinge of green. I freaked out.”

The Keelys rushed Iann to the Mar

Mary Bridge Children’s provides support beyond medicine for kids like Christopher

There is more to healing than just medicine and often, these extra layers of support — emotional, spiritual and social — can make all the difference in a patient’s life and treatment.

That was the case for Christopher, 8, a caring and social kid who loves to make new friends and bring light to any interaction, something he’s able to continue doing thanks to the medical interventions he’s received at Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital.

“There are so many layers in health care,” Chrisopher’s mom Le

Payton teams up with Mary Bridge Children’s gene therapy and CTU to defy odds

Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a genetic condition when a child’s muscles progressively deteriorate. The disorder affects 1 in 10,000 babies born in the United States each year. If untreated, most kids diagnosed with SMA don’t live past the age of 2.

Payton, 2, was referred to Mary Bridge Children’s neurology department at 3 days old with symptoms of low muscle tone, weakness and no startle reflex. After a few more lab draws and a visit with the genetics specialist, she was diagnosed with SMA

Making women’s health a priority in Thurston County and beyond

In the late 1970s, Angela J. Bowen, MD, saw a need for more accessible health care for women and their families. As a passionate and dedicated provider, she spearheaded a campaign to improve access to women’s health care services, successfully bringing a second hospital to Olympia — Capital Medical Center.

MultiCare purchased Capital Medical Center in April 2021, making it a nonprofit hospital for the first time in its history. Dr. Bowen’s legacy inspired MultiCare’s strategic plan for Capital

Bridges Center for Grieving Children helps grandmother and her grandkids overcome significant loss

Gail Warner is no stranger to loss. She experiences grief in a variety of spaces: as a mental health counselor for Catholic Community Services, as a volunteer at Bridges Center for Grieving Children and in her personal life.

But it wasn’t until the passing of her daughter in 2020 that Gail knew she needed outside help — for her and for her grandkids, Asianette and Anonte.

“I didn’t want my grandkids to be alone in their grief,” Gail says. “I called the Bridges program director and asked if I c

Mary Bridge Children’s care teams and donors help Nohea triumph over cancer

Like most kids her age, 4-year-old Nohea loves to sing, dance, play dress-up and ride her Hello Kitty bike. But unlike most kids her age, Nohea has been diagnosed with B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (B-Cell ALL). Along with her family, Nohea’s care team at Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital is working hard to help her overcome it.

“When she was first diagnosed, it was her first time getting her blood drawn, her first time getting an IV — the whole experience was nerve-wracking,” Nohea’s mom,

Pride in medicine: Multidisciplinary team champions for LGBTQIA+ youth

Mary Bridge Children’s Gender Health Clinic is one of only four in Washington state. The clinic’s goal is to serve trans and gender diverse (TGD) youth and their families by providing accurate and appropriate education about affirming health care. This can be as simple as connecting them with a care provider who asks for and uses their correct pronouns.

“These youth and their families are anxious for education, information, support and love,” says Tammy (she/her), RN.

Tammy has been a register

Providing families with a fresh START

According to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study, the number of pregnant people who were identified as having an opioid-related diagnosis at the time of delivering their baby increased by 131 percent from 2010 to 2017. In Washington state, hundreds of pregnant parents struggle with Substance Use Disorders. These parents are often forced to go outside their communities and support network to receive adequate care, as many rehabilitation centers aren’t equipped to help them.

Donor-powered Children’s Therapy Unit gives Carlos independence

Across the street from MultiCare Good Samaritan Hospital exists a magical place where childlike wonder, play and hard work unite.

The Mary Bridge Good Samaritan Children’s Therapy Unit (CTU) may look like a giant playground, but for the 3,796 kids who visited in 2021, it’s a place where every appointment is filled with mental and physical challenges, disguised as play.

At least once a week, you’ll find 3-year-old Carlos donning a bowtie, the cutest dimples and a determined attitude. CTU has be

Mary Bridge Children’s teams up with Super Lance

If you’ve ever been to the Mary Bridge Children’s Outpatient Center, you’ve probably seen an energetic, smiley 4-year-old dressed in a superhero cape covered in patches, handing out trading cards. That’s “Super Lance.”

Lance is on the autism spectrum, and in addition to being a 2022 Mary Bridge Children’s Patient Ambassador, he’s an ambassador for an organization called TinySuperheroes. The company empowers kids with tools, including capes and trading cards they can use to help communicate thei

Mary Bridge Children’s Loves to Read program expands to inpatient unit with donor support

The benefits associated with reading are endless. According to the national Reach Out & Read program, engaging in language-rich interactions helps children develop communication skills, patience, empathy, a wider vocabulary, increased listening skills and more.

“Learning to read is one of the most important developmental goals of childhood — one that should not only be encouraged during times of wellness,” Mary Bridge Children’s Inpatient Services Provider Robyn Rogers, MD says. “Hospitalizatio

Community generosity brings us closer to healing and a healthy future

MultiCare’s Center for Health Equity and Wellness’ (CHEW) purpose — to restore and ensure the health of our communities — takes a group of dedicated individuals, donor support and many community initiatives and programs to accomplish.

“It’s important for MultiCare to be doing this work because at the end of the day, our goal is to partner for healing and a healthy future,” CHEW’s Director of Health Equity Jamilia Sherls-Jones, DNP, MPH, RN says. “This means making sure that everyone in our comm

Mary Bridge Children’s patient faces cancer with humor

Kevin is the name that Jack picked out for his tumor when he was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia at Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital.

Kevin was found during a routine checkup. Jack appeared to have a bad cough, but the actual cause was a tumor blocking Jack’s airway.

“I remember the doctor pulling us aside, taking us to another room and pulling up the X-ray,” Jack’s dad Eric says. “I’ll never forget that. It felt like somebody punched me in the gut.”

After nearly eight months of ch

Former patient returns to Mary Bridge Children’s to train as a child life specialist

In two short decades, Payton Allen has lived quite a life that includes recovering from multiple heart surgeries and countless other procedures.

At two days old, Payton was diagnosed with a heart murmur and Atrial Ventricular Septal Defect (AVSD), which led to her first surgery (at 3 weeks old) — a pulmonary artery banding — at Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital.

“I was in the third stage of heart failure,” Payton says. “There were a lot of unknowns, which made everything even scarier for my pare

An Le: representing the unsung health care heroes

When we talk about “frontline health care workers,” what often comes to mind are doctors and nurses. The reality is that there are so many different types of health care heroes who have been working hard throughout the pandemic to provide care. Heroes like the nutrition services team who help feed every hospital patient.

An Le is the manager of nutrition services at MultiCare Allenmore Hospital. She’s been with the department since 2008. When the COVID-19 pandemic began, she and her team had to

Brain tumor can’t stop Evangeline from spreading joy and playing pranks

The first thing you’ll notice about Evangeline Lovie, 9, is her infectious laugh. Pull a prank or tell a joke about bodily functions, and you’re sure to hear it.

When asked what got her through more than 100 days at Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital, her answer is simple — “jokes,” Evangeline says.

For about a year, Evangeline suffered from monthly migraines and disorientation that was serious enough that her family brought her to urgent care more than once. She was always assessed and then sent

Mary Bridge Children’s helps medically-fragile child evacuate wildfire with assistance from Helping Hands

Ms. Ruby, as her mom likes to call her, was born six years ago with a condition called Pompe Disease. The progressive condition causes muscle weakness and requires weekly enzyme infusions. Her condition requires round-the-clock medical care. Ruby is on life support to help her breathe and she receives her nutrition through a feeding tube.

Ruby, her parents and her five siblings live in Morton, Washington, which is about two hours away from Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital.

In order to be transp

Cancer patient receives a 'Helping Hand' through years of treatment

After weeks of feeling sick, Kari Newton came to the MultiCare Allenmore Hospital emergency department, where she discovered she had stage 4 cancer in both her liver and colon.

“I was scared,” Kari says. “They were asking the weirdest questions. I didn’t know what to think. But when they told me my cancer was stage 4, I thought, ‘How long do I have?’”

Kari immediately began chemotherapy treatment and had her first surgery, a liver resection, in December 2012. She had another surgery on her col