What Happens When Medical Professionals Have Dinner with Families Who Have a Child with Down Syndrome?
Why These Dinners are Important and How You Can be a Part of One
At Hope Story, there are two things we know to be true:
- Parents of children with Down syndrome love their children
- Many parents have a negative interaction with their medical professionals surrounding their child’s Down syndrome diagnosis / the way in which prenatal testing results are delivered.
We believe that if doctors can hear firsthand from families, it can change how they view having a child with Down syndrome and likely change how they deliver the diagnosis to families. We are passionate about helping medical professionals get to know families of children with Down syndrome.
As these relationships are formed, our desire is that medical professionals can see that while having a child with Down syndrome may be surprising news for a parent, it’s not bad news. We believe every parent of a child with Down syndrome is a story of hope for someone else and that their story can bring hope to new parents. In fact, we have built out a nationwide network of families who do just that. We call these families Hope Advocates. (Learn more about the Hope Advocate process by clicking here.)
What the Doctors are Saying
At our Medical Professional Dinners we create a space for medical professionals to learn more about the everyday lives of kids with Down syndrome and their families. The feedback we have received from our table host families and doctors has been extremely positive. Here are a few observations we find especially interesting/encouraging:
- Over 77% of the doctors surveyed said they had never had more than a brief conversation with a family of a child with Down syndrome before the dinner.
- Over 88% of the doctors surveyed said they would use different words/phrases when delivering the diagnosis after the dinner.
- Over 88% of the doctors surveyed said they would encourage their patients receiving a Down syndrome diagnosis to connect with a Hope Advocate.
- Over 77% of the doctors surveyed said they had more resources at their disposal to offer to their patients after the dinner.
- 100% of the doctors surveyed would suggest a Hope Story Medical Professional dinner to other medical residents.
The entire event is free of charge for all attendees. If you’re interested in learning how you can bring a Hope Story Medical Professional Dinner to your city, please get in touch with us!
If you're a medical professional please check out our complete list of no-cost resources for you and your patients.
If you’re a parent of a child with Down syndrome, the first step is becoming a become a Hope Advocate. When you sign up, you’ll receive a personalized Hope Kit to help you build relationships with medical professionals in your community.
Our hope is the unique insight and tools doctors receive at these dinners help them deliver a Down syndrome diagnosis with hope. We believe building relationships between medical professionals and parents of children with Down syndrome have the ability to change the diagnosis experience for parents.