MONROE, La. (KNOE) – In the St. Francis Medical Center Foundation’s 2 Cars 2 Winners campaign, we’re spotlighting the Juneau family, who had triplets in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at St. Francis Medical Center.
“The appointment was at 11 a.m. and we crossed the street to the hospital and at 1:09 p.m. Daniel was born,” says Mark Juneau. “I mean it was so quick.”
Angela Juneau says she had a blood test during a routine checkup two weeks before their due date. It was then that the doctors discovered that she had HELLP-syndrome and had to deliver their triplets right away. Mark and Angela Juneau say the care they received at St. Francis Medical Center was second to none.
“The nurses were on call knowing we were coming, so they were fantastic,” says Mark.
“We loved Dr de Soler, he was so knowledgeable and they would talk to you and tell you what was going on and tell you not to freak out about it because I’m not a nurse and I didn’t know, explains Angèle She says that the three children spent time in the NICU, but luckily they were able to return home without any major problems.
Now their children are all adults and in high school.
One of these triplets recently made the return trip to the NICU for the Program of health education centers in the region, or AHEC, where she was able to observe doctors in different departments. Hannah Juneau also met some of the doctors who took care of her.
“Being at NICU was really interesting because I got to meet Dr. de Soler and a few others who had been there,” says Hannah. “And that really helped me decide what I want to do, I think I want to be a helicopter nurse, maybe work in the ER.”
Within three weeks, students see everything.
“Gunshot wounds to all aspects of hospitalization, and I actually had one [student] who said I’m not sure I want to do this, I know I want to be in health care, but I don’t know if I want to be a surgeon anymore,” says Melissa Macaluso, the volunteer services supervisor at Saint Francois.
She says the program opens up opportunities for students and they come out certified in CPR on the other side. They do the program every summer and it only happens once a year.
“Students apply through the local AHEC program – Ahec Bayou North Program — and they can just search for that online, they apply through that program on their high school campus,” Macaluso says. “When they apply, they put in their report cards, they have to write an essay, fill out an application package, and then we interview them. We had about 40 applicants, 14 were chosen, and we ended up bringing in 13 students during those three weeks. [this year].”
If you missed the program this year and still want to get involved with the hospital, there are ways.
“They can even take it a step further and join our volunteer program in the future if that’s something they want to do,” Macaluso says. “We have a program, it’s an ambassador for health and we go from room to room to help patients and we bring them anything they need or have forgotten and we check on their families.”
If you want to give back in another way, you can buy a ticket for the 2 Cars 2 Winners raffle for a chance to win a 2022 Nissan Titan Pro-4X or a Toyota 4Runner SR5. The raffle raises funds for women’s, children’s and critical care services. This year, proceeds from the raffle will go towards a major remodeling of NICU, which hasn’t seen a project like this in about 40 years.
Also, if you buy a ticket on line By September 9 at noon, you’ll be entered into the Creed and Creed Early Bird Special for a chance to win an additional $5,000. The winner will be drawn at 5 p.m. that evening.
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