Child drowning: Cook Children’s do exhibition to raise awareness – Low Calorie Diets Tips

The Fort Worth Hospital created an exhibit to represent the victims of child drowning in swimming pools and bathtubs.

FORT WORTH, Texas – Each year, hospital workers at Cook Children’s Medical Center conduct a swim safety awareness campaign.

But this year is different.

Now there is an eye-catching exhibition in front of the hospital that will catch your attention. It is designed as a reality check for anyone planning to be near a swimming pool with children.

Cook Children’s Marketing and Communications has set up a clothesline of children’s swimsuits and the traditional rubber ducks that parents buy their children for their baths. The aim of this ad is to sound the alarm about swimming safety, especially as the number of drownings has increased this year before summer officially begins.

The 15 swimsuits hanging from a clothesline are the same size swimsuits belonging to local children involved in drowning incidents. The yellow rubber duckies represent the children involved in bathtub drowning incidents.

The exhibition is a first for the hospital because they have seen and heard enough.

Wini King is Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Cook Children’s Medical Center and Chief Communications Officer. The last thing she and her team wanted was to create the same old awareness message about the importance of water safety.

They thought about what they could do to make more people think about their responsibility when it comes to the little ones in the pool or in the bath at home.

“Because if you look at the swimsuits, these are swimsuits that you looked at at retail to put your kid on for a swim. You can identify with this. And the rubber ducky, of course, she doesn’t have a rubber ducky in the bathtub,” King said. “So it’s just trying to make an impact.”

In 2017, drowning patient data from Cook Children’s Medical Center showed one fatal out of nine drowning incidents. So far in 2022 there have been three out of 29 fatal drownings. The increase is just another reason the people at Cook Children’s Medical Center are hoping the clothesline ad will make an impact.

“Effective was the word everyone wants to use. What can we do to be effective? We have been running this campaign since 2016. So it tends to repeat itself year after year, and we wonder if people aren’t paying attention anymore,” King said. “And that’s why you have to do something that will shock and awe and make people go, oh my goodness , that could be my child.”

All too often, the incident of drowning and its aftermath escalates into an experience no emergency room worker wants to have. Hospital workers understand that drowning incidents are accidents, but they all believe they are preventable. While not all drownings are fatal, when they are, it affects even emergency room workers who are trained to save lives.

“Unfortunately, when this child died as a result of drowning, you don’t want to hear the wails, screams and cries of the parents,” King said.

King and her team set up the clothesline on Memorial Day weekend, when the pools are normally open. Since then, the number of incidents has risen to 29 child drownings.

Unfortunately four of them died by drowning. The clothesline is meant to be a reality check for parents who get distracted at the pool.

“Don’t let your guard down. And our campaign is ‘Rescue Your Child’. Never take your eyes off,” King said. “Not on her phone, not looking at the TV, doing nothing but watching the kids in the pool closely.”

Cook Children’s Medical Center has partnered with the Fort Worth YMCA to work together to prevent deaths from swimming. Jacquelyn Tokar serves as the YMCA vice president of compliance. They also hope their campaign will result in fewer drownings.

“We have these water watcher tags,” Tokar said.

She and her team at the YMCA are also sounding the alarm about swim safety, asking adults, parents and everyone responsible for swim safety to wear a bracelet commemorating an aquatic observer.

“Or sometimes they’ll be on a lanyard and be intentionally annoying. The point is that they should remind you that you have a job,” Tokar said.

As you can see from the clothesline, some of the drownings involve children in the smallest swimsuits. And believe Tokar, who is a lifeguard herself, it only takes seconds for things to go wrong.

“It makes me sick. It’s 100% preventable. That’s not it. It’s preventable,” Tokar said. “It’s not a massive accident, as you know, like a car crash that happened. And we cannot control the situation. We can control this by swimming in a lifeguard pool, by watching our children learn CPR by the water so we can react immediately if something happens.”

Tokar also encourages families to take advantage of the YMCA’s children’s swimming lessons. According to Tokar, a child is less likely to drown if they’ve had at least one swimming lesson.

Earlier this year, Tokar had to come to the aid of a child who ran towards the water in the same pool during a family visit.

Tokar said, “A two-year-old came in with another family and went straight into the water, jumped in and I ran across the pool and pulled her out.”

Both the hospital and the YMCA strongly recommend the use of only Coast Guard-approved life jackets and life jackets for children.

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