Ashlie’s Embrace’s donates CuddleCot to MetroHealth
Ashlie's Embrace has a mission: to get a Cuddle Cot into every hospital in the United States.
It's a bold mission but it is bold for a reason: to give parents of stillborn babies time to say goodbye.
Erin and Anthony Maroon’s first child, Ashlie, became one of those babies when she was stillborn at 41 week and one day in October 2015. She could not be kept at room temperature because of the changes that occur after death, but the freezing temperatures of the hospital’s cold room were changing her small features too quickly. After less than an hour with her, Erin and Anthony said goodbye to their baby girl forever.
Erin read about the Cuddle Cot as she was preparing to leave the hospital. Her response was immediate. "I was so angry and thought why didn't we have one of those?"
She and Anthony founded Ashlie’s Embrace’s in order to provide CuddleCots™ to U.S. hospitals so that parents have more time to hold their baby and to say goodbye.
As Erin says on the group's website: "...my husband and I spent less than one hour with our first and only child. There is nothing advanced about that. I realized then that it was up to US to make sure every U.S. hospital, birthing center and NICU has a CuddleCot. Other parents will, unfortunately, endure the same tragedy. When they are faced with whether to hold their child for hours on end or say goodbye after less than one, they can have the choices we didn’t."
MetroHealth was the recipient of Ashlie's Embrace on May 15, as Erin came to donate a Cuddle Cot to the hospital's labor and delivery staff. It was an emotional moment as Erin shared her story, but the staff knew just how much the cot would mean to the families they work with.
"Here at MetroHealth, I have been honored to take care of - unfortunately - many moms and dads come into our unit not knowing they aren't going to leave with their child. We always ask what more we can do for these parents and thank goodness there is Ashlie's Embrace because they are changing the way that these parents are able to spend time with their child...change a diaper, take the pictures, prolonging the amount of time, because who are we to say that their time is up? For us to be able to give them the gift of time it's truly such and honor and a blessing, " says RN Megan King, assistant nurse manager for Labor and Delivery.
The MetroHealth System is redefining health care by going beyond medical treatment to improve the foundations of community health and well-being: affordable housing, a cleaner environment, economic opportunity and access to fresh food, convenient transportation, legal help and other services. The system strives to become as good at preventing disease as it is at treating it.
The system’s more than 600 doctors, 1,700 nurses and 7,800 employees go to work each day with a mission of service, to their patients and to the community. As Cuyahoga County’s safety-net health system, MetroHealth plays an essential role in the region, caring for anyone and everyone, regardless of an ability to pay.
Founded in 1837, MetroHealth operates four hospitals, four emergency departments and more than 20 health centers and 40 additional sites throughout Cuyahoga County. The system serves more than 300,000 patients, two-thirds of whom are uninsured or covered by Medicare or Medicaid.
MetroHealth is home to Cuyahoga County’s most experienced Level I Adult Trauma Center, verified since 1992, and Ohio’s only adult and pediatric trauma and burn center.
As an academic medical center, MetroHealth is committed to research and to teaching and training tomorrow’s caregivers. Each active staff physician holds a faculty appointment at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. Its main campus hospital houses the Cleveland Metropolitan School District’s Lincoln-West School of Science & Health, the only high school in America located inside a hospital.
Knowing that good health is about much more than good medical care, MetroHealth has launched the Institute for H.O.P.E.™ (Health, Opportunity, Partnership, Empowerment), which uses a coordinated, collaborative and strategic approach to help patients with non-medical needs such as healthy food, stable housing and job training.
The MetroHealth Glick Center, a new 11-floor hospital, is under construction on the system’s main campus in Cleveland and is scheduled to welcome its first patients in October 2022. The billion-dollar project is the cornerstone of a wider neighborhood revitalization effort led by the system and its partners in the community.
For more information, visit metrohealth.org.