Redefine success: Decide for yourself what really matters
No Ordinary Boy author Jennifer Johannesen talks about society’s expectations for constant improvement, how this plays into therapy for children with disabilities, and how families can be left shouldering more burden than they want or can handle. Jennifer explores how institutions, clinicians and parents alike contribute to the increasing pressures placed on families and shares her experiences as she leads a discussion on ways to redefine ‘success.’
The over-administration of the lives of families with children with special needs not only threatens to completely snow them under with paperwork, but also creates an unnecessarily stressful environment of constant monitoring, surveillance, reporting, and goal-setting. Jennifer presents theories as to why these conditions exist and shares how she opted for an alternate route for her family.
Ethics in Healthcare Decision-making
Ethics are often seen as an instrument to remedy conflict, but are in fact at play in every healthcare decision made in the pediatric healthcare setting. Jennifer discusses how all decision-makers and advisors, parents and clinicians alike, ought to consider more than just the clinical outcomes when making decisions - they should also identify personal motivations, family and cultural influences and other environmental factors--all lenses through which we filter and distort information.
A Patient/Parent Narrative and Perspective
Jennifer often speaks to new and experienced professionals in orientation, lunch-and-learn and professional development settings. Her 'Patient Perspective' talks are geared to the specific audience and healthcare or therapy-related discipline. Themes include experiences in healthcare settings, receiving bad news, communication styles and decision-making.