See Checkups Aren’t Scary

We’ve all heard horror stories of taking children to the doctor. Many of us have experienced these doctors’ visits with children who were afraid and resistant of anything and everything. Who really wants to be poked, prodded, pricked by a doctor anyway? Children are often scared and unsure of what to expect during their visit. This can result in a bad experience that haunts the child forever. Our partner, Homestead Hospital, is helping to combat this fear through the Teddy Bear Clinic.

Nearly 250 children from the South Dade-Miami area came out in February 2016 to participate in the 2nd Annual Teddy Bear Clinic held during the Family Health and Wellness Fair at Homestead Hospital. Through simulated check-ups performed on Speedy bear, the Teddy Bear clinic allows children to see how the caring nurses at the hospital perform different medical procedures.

During the event, each child had a chance to interact one-on-one with a nurse, who sat a Speedy Bear on the table and gave it a head-to-toe check-up using numerous medical tools such as a stethoscope, thermometer, and pediatric blood pressure cuff. Most bears end up having a “boo-boo” such as a fever, broken leg, or ear infection. The child is asked to take the “repaired” bear home to care for it using extra measures and instructions given by the nurses.

Through this exercise, kids realize that check-ups aren’t so scary after all – they are just a part of growing up and staying healthy.

“The Teddy Bear Clinic has become a highlight of our health fair,” said Bill Duquette, CEO of Homestead Hospital. “Thanks to the continued generosity of The NASCAR Foundation, children interact with nurses, learn that check-ups aren’t so scary after all, and take home a bear to care for and keep well.”  

The Teddy Bear Clinic is only one part of the Family Health and Wellness Fair held at Homestead Hospital.  The fair allows families in the community to get free health screenings and get one-on-one healthcare conversations with professionals from the hospital. The fair also features a Children’s Expo dedicated to newborn care and pediatric health and wellness, and fun activities for kids, including a fire truck, SWAT vehicle, inflatable slide, face painting, arts & crafts.

The NASCAR Foundation is proud to partner with Homestead Hospital and other organizations across the country to help enhance the delivery of medical care to children in our racing communities who need it most. Because of the continued support of generous individuals, we can fund programs like the Teddy Bear Clinic.