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East Valley Pediatric Society Newsletter

Ryan House featured by Dr. Norman Saba, M.D., FAAP

Ryan House featured by Dr. Norman Saba, M.D., FAAP, in the East Valley Pediatric Society Newsletter December 2016 Volume 25 Issue 25.



Stat News / Boston Globe Features Ryan House

Stat News Features Ryan House

Stat News, an online reporter of health and medicine, recently featured Ryan House. Report, Bob Tedeschi, speaks of how the United States can use more pediatric hospice facilities such as Ryan House and talks to Dr. Berger (of Ryan House) regarding mindful intervention in delicate situations. For full coverage: Read Up


Eighth Annual Ryan House Community Breakfast Grosses $337,000, Celebrates Most Attended Breakfast Event to Date and Featured Honorary Chair Luis Gonzalez

Contact: Taylor More, (602) 376-6835 or tmore@ryanhouse.org

Funds raised will provide respite and end of life care to children with life-limiting conditions.

PHOENIX (May 9, 2016) – Nearly 1,100 guests attended Ryan House’s Eighth Annual Community Breakfast at the Arizona Biltmore Resort on May 6 featuring Honorary Chair Luis “Gonzo” Gonzalez, senior advisor to the President & CEO of the Arizona Diamondbacks.

The event raised $337,000 that will directly support the nonprofit organization which relies 100 percent on community donation and cares for Arizona’s most medically fragile children and their families.

“As Ryan House celebrates its sixth year with open doors open hearts, we’re thrilled to announce that this year’s Community Breakfast set an attendance record of nearly 1,100 guests,” said Ryan House Executive Director Alyssa Crockett. “We are so grateful for the support of the community, which has opened its heart to Ryan House and embraced our mission. For the children and families we serve, Ryan House is a lifeline.”

Gonzalez lent his support as Honorary Chair of the Breakfast and gave remarks during the program about the importance of the Ryan House mission. Hospice of the Valley’s Community Engagement Director, Lin-Sue Cooney, served as the event emcee. This year’s event chair was Joal Watson, wife of De Jon Watson, senior vice president of operations for the Arizona Diamondbacks. The event also featured a Ryan House family keynote from the Kizer Family, vocal performance by Ashley Creighton, and a blessing by Ryan Cottor, namesake for Ryan House.

Other special guests that morning included Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton, Phoenix City Councilman Bill Gates and the Honorable Betsy Bayless, former Arizona Secretary of State and President Emeritus at Maricopa Integrated Health System.

Ryan House is a safe and joyful place where kids can be kids and families can be families. During respite stays of up to 28 days per year, Ryan House provides normative childhood experiences, including swimming and sleepovers, to children whose medical conditions make that difficult and empowers children to life their best life. As one of only two facilities of its kind in the nation, Ryan House is leading the way for a new model of care in pediatric palliative care.

“We’re proud that we’ve been able to serve 560 families in the six years Ryan House has been in operation,” said Crockett.  “We estimate as many as 5,000 families in Maricopa County could benefit from this kind of care. The funds raised today will allow us to continue to reach those who need us most.”

About Ryan House

With our world-class care and programs, we embrace all children and their families as they navigate life-limiting or end-of-life journeys through palliative and respite care that addresses the emotional, spiritual, and social needs of the family, continuity of care from diagnosis to end-of-life, expert care provided by our prestigious care partners and highly-trained staff and a loving community that offers ongoing support and compassion. Ryan House is the only facility of its kind in the state and only one of two in the country. For more information visit ryanhouse.org.  Follow us on Twitter and Instagram and join us on Facebook.


A Few Words From Our Executive Director

Ryan House Executive Director Speaks To The Arizona Republic



Written by Alyssa Crockett, Executive Director of Ryan House.

“Think for a moment that your son or daughter, or any child near and dear to you has been diagnosed with a life-limiting or fatal condition.
It may be cancer, cerebral palsy, congenital heart disorder, trauma or injury.
How would you cope?

Where would you go to find support for the whole family and the best care possible for your child?

In Arizona, children with life-limiting conditions and their families come to The Board of Visitors Ryan House at the corner of 1st Avenue and Thomas in Central Phoenix. The first of its kind in Arizona and one of two in the nation, Ryan House is more than a facility; it is a concept at the forefront of pediatric palliative care.

Arizona point of pride
Arizona is often criticized for its apparent lack of investments in children and how we treat our most vulnerable residents. All Arizonans should take great pride in being among the first in the nation to embrace the Ryan House concept.

Palliative care is comfort care aimed at improving the quality of life for the child and family.

Especially important with children, it is delivered by an interdisciplinary care team concurrently with curative care and treatments. Palliative care addresses the emotional, spiritual and social needs of the child and family, supports the child and family in establishing goals of care and and quality of life discussions, and decreases the fear, isolation and anxiety from diagnosis through end-of-life and beyond.

Healthcare at its best
As a concept, Ryan House represents the best in healthcare — care is coordinated, supportive, patient-centered and provided across a continuum throughout the trajectory of the child’s condition.

It is also cost-effective. Families plan overnight stays at Ryan House, up to 28 days a year, instead of costly crisis visits to emergency rooms for respite and pain management. Like adult palliative care, pediatric palliative care lowers overall medical expenditures.

The demand for this care is growing fast.

Advances in medicine help children with chronic and life-limiting conditions live longer. In the United States, more than 500,000 children are coping with a life-limiting condition every year.

At Ryan House, those children include a young girl with a contagious smile who battles a rare genetic disorder that greatly limits her life. And a happy, resilient and loving boy struggling mightily with terminal illness. Another is a sweet 16-month-old girl diagnosed with a fatal disease.

Since opening our doors in 2010, Ryan House has provided vital care and services to more than 530 Arizona children and families in need, and supported more than 240 children at the end of life. In addition, Ryan House has supported more than 2,000 siblings, parents and grandparents, and countless other extended family members and friends.

Ryan House is not an experiment. It is a necessity that needs to expand.

Free to families
Today, Ryan House is sustained by community and philanthropic dollars ($2.1 million in Fiscal 15) and services are provided at no cost to families. We are lucky and grateful to have such a generous community so vested in our mission, and an exception care partner in Hospice of the Valley.”

Alyssa Crockett is executive director of Ryan House in Phoenix. Originally published in the Arizona Republic. 



Phoenix Magazine Features Dr. Berger

Phoenix Magazine Features Dr. Berger

A Top Doc honoree in 2013, Dr. Kevin Berger certainly earned his status as the top vote-getter in Phoenix Magazine’s newly-added hospice/palliative care category this year.

Dr. Berger specializes in pediatric hospice care and serves the community by being one of three doctors that volunteers their time to Ryan House. We’re lucky to have him supporting our cause.

Read the article on Phoenix Magazine website here.


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