But healing spaces are not standard issue at modern hospitals. In fact, some are in danger of being eliminated. Earlier this year, a movement began to save the beloved Prouty Garden at Boston Children’s Hospital, which may become a casualty of the facility’s expansion. A petition was created on Change.org; there are currently more than 4,200 signatures. “The relief it gives to our long-term patients is a godsend,” writes one supporter, a 22-year volunteer at the hospital. “I have witnessed the comfort and solace it has given so many families.”
“All the amenities at Nemours are as much for the parents as they are the children,” says Dr. Donnelly as a yellow tang fish swims past his head. The saltwater tank on the ground floor is provided and maintained by SeaWorld. (Being near Orlando has its perks.)
Last week, the young patients staying at Nemours woke up to a curious sight: Elves dangling outside their windows. The window washing crew donned pointed hats, green tunics, and red and green argyle socks as they worked their squeegees. Sure, they brought a dose of holiday cheer, but more importantly, they’re making sure the sun gets in.