Introducing our local 2020 Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Champion
Joaquin Tiburcio Vargas, Age 1 year, 10 months.
Beating the odds from day one, Joaquin is a constant inspiration to those
who get to interact with him and watch him develop. Totally enamored by
his smile, charm, and bubbly personality, the nurses at Salinas Valley
Memorial Hospital System nominated him to be this year’s local Children’s
Miracle Network Hospitals Champion.
Joaquin was born March 29, 2018 with Down Syndrome. Down Syndrome is a
genetic disorder that comes with a list of increased health risks and
complications including a shortened life expectancy. When Joaquin’s
mom Ana, heard the news she felt shocked and overwhelmed. She remembers
the doctor saying, “you can still love your child.” These
words stung because Joaquin was already loved even before he was born.
Like all parents that just gave birth, she just wanted to know if Joaquin
would be healthy.
Fortunately, little Joaquin was doing great! Joaquin was officially ready
to enter the world and begin his journey to living his best life. In order
for him to do that, Joaquin’s parents would need to connect to the
resources that were available, understand the diagnosis better, create
a support system, and develop a plan for Joaquin to receive services that
would provide him with the best care to give him a bright future.
Due to the many complications that come with having Down Syndrome, about
a year later, Joaquin was admitted to SVMH for Respiratory Syncytial Virus
(RSV), a virus that can be quite harmful for kids who have a weakened
immune system. A few months later, Joaquin found himself back at SVMH,
this time for kidney infections. Despite the various diagnoses, Joaquin’s
time at SVMH brought out his true personality. Pretty soon, the nurses,
doctors, and staff found themselves charmed by his contagious smile and
laughter. Even Joaquin’s mom was surprised at how cooperative and
positive he was, regardless of the pain he was enduring. Joaquin became
a superstar in the Pediatrics Unit and throughout the hospital, brightening
anyone’s day who interacted with him.
Access to early life services such as speech, occupational, and physical
therapy contribute to improving the life of a child with Down Syndrome,
giving them the chance to live life to its fullest potential. CMN Hospitals’
mission is to support the healthcare needs of kids like Joaquin, and that
includes making sure that those services are available. Our local program
provides necessary support for equipment, services, and programs within
the hospital and throughout the tri-county area, ensuring that every child
has what they need to thrive.
Join us on Joaquin’s Journey through 2020 and learn about the variety
of resources, tools, and support your contributions provide to kids like
Joaquin in our own tri-county area.