NEW ORLEANS – The Bella Bowman Foundation has committed to a $500,000 gift toward Children’s Hospital New Orleans’ capital campaign, Extraordinary Together, for the construction of “Bella’s Room”, a three-room comfort suite designed to be a sanctuary for delivering expert end-of-life care for the child, as well as the whole family.
The Palliative Care program at Children’s Hospital New Orleans, known as the Pelican Krewe, is an interdisciplinary team that provides an extra layer of support for children and families living with serious illness. Bella’s Room will amplify the level of care the Pelican Krewe provides for patients and families nearing end of life, as an oasis for patients and their families.
“Bella’s Room will not only be specifically designed with each child we have had the honor to care for in mind, it will also promote comfort and solace for the entire family,” says Alexis Morvant, MD, Assistant Professor of Clinical Pediatrics at LSU Health and Chief of Palliative Care at Children’s Hospital New Orleans. “With the generous support of the Bella Bowman Foundation, honoring sweet Bella’s legacy, we will transform the way children and families across Louisiana and the Gulf South experience serious illness and end of life care.”
The Bella’s Room Comfort Suite will consist of a three-room suite available in the hospital for children in need of end-of-life care and their families. The center room will provide the child with a medically safe place to stay, an adjourning room is designed for families to sleep and experience respite, and a third room will serve as a gathering place for extended family.
“This commitment is important to our foundation and to Bella’s legacy,” says Trey Bowman, President of the Bella Bowman Foundation and Bella’s father. “By transforming Bella’s Room into a space designed for each child’s interests, we can help bring an additional level of home-like comfort to patients and families while in the hospital.”
Bella’s Room will allow for expert, compassionate medical care, relieving some of the discomfort and stress of illness, while offering psychosocial support to the family, and the time and space to focus on making every moment as meaningful as possible.
“We are incredibly inspired by Bella’s story, and the commitment of the Bella Bowman Foundation to take their difficult journey and in return do something incredibly positive for others facing similar unimaginable experiences,” says John R. Nickens IV, President and Chief Executive Officer of Children’s Hospital New Orleans. “The Bowman Foundation’s generous commitment will deliver meaningful experiences for families that will last a lifetime, and we are proud to partner to bring this vision to life.”
The Pelican Krewe at Children’s Hospital New Orleans consists of a Pediatric Palliative Care team of doctors, nurses, social workers, spiritual care experts, integrative therapists, and music therapy to care for the body, mind, and spirit of children and families living with serious illness. The team provides palliative care to patients of any age and at any stage of serious illness. Supporting the treatment for underlying illnesses while striving for the best possible quality of life is paramount – making each day the best day possible.
Construction for Bella’s Room will begin this fall, and the space is expected to open in early 2022. Learn more about the Pelican Krewe at Children’s Hospital at chnola.org.