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Top 10 Miracles the Extra Life Gaming Community Has Provided Sick and Injured Kids

The gaming community, through Extra Life surpassed a new milestone of raising more than $30 million for sick and injured kids treated at 170 Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.

Since 2008, Extra Life, a 24-hour gaming marathon, has grown to a community of over 50,000 gamers dedicated to saving and improving the lives of local kids.

It all started with a little girl from Orange, Texas

The Extra Life gaming community has reason to celebrate as it’s surpassed $30 million raised since 2008. Here are 10 miracles funds raised through Extra Life have provided our Network children’s hospitals:

10. Vein finders

CMN Hospitals treat children of all ages and sizes – from the tiniest newborns- to teenagers and beyond. Vein illuminators assist with IV insertion in pediatric patients, making it easier to find veins on the first try, reducing the number of stick attempts for children. This means more accuracy and less pain. With funds raised through Extra Life, UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital and McLane Scott and White Children’s Hospital were able to purchase vein illuminators.

9. Supported therapy programs that help children understand their treatment plans

Hospital experiences are unpleasant enough. For a child, they can be especially frightful. Funds raised through Extra Life have helped fund child life specialists, who are certified to help children and families cope with the stress and anxiety of hospitalization.

8.  Charity care for patients and families

Some families have high deductibles, high co-payments or no coverage at all. CMN Hospitals provide $3.4 billion in charity care annually.  Funds raised through Extra Life have impacted families who need assistance.

7.  Making a children’s hospital a children’s hospital

Donations from the Extra Life gaming community have helped CHRISTUS St. Patrick Foundation take on a special project to make the emergency department more pediatric friendly. The project funded the installation of seven art murals, as well as coloring books and stickers.

6. Patient services that go beyond medical care

CMN Hospitals services extend beyond medical care, caring for the developmental and emotions needs of children. Child life programs, pastoral care and case management are all examples of services that have received support from Extra Life.

5. Two words: Pet therapy

Interacting with a friendly pet can help many physical and mental issues, such as reducing blood pressure and creating a calming effect. EMHS Foundation has used Extra Life donations to provide interactive robots that look like baby harp seals to play a role in pet therapy sessions. The seals ease anxiety and improve the patients ability to process feelings of sadness, loss, grief and trauma.

4. Helped kids stay on track at school

Donations from Extra Life have been used by Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta to provide teachers that help kids while in the hospital, and also transition back to school when they are ready. The teachers work with school systems to make sure the returning student is on the most appropriate school track.

3.  Donations have provided incubators for emergency transport

Gamers have been able to provide University of Virginia Children’s Hospital with an ambulance incubator for the critical care transportation team. This machine allows the tiniest of patients to be transported safely with specially trained pediatric registered nurses and paramedics.

2. Helped redefine in-home care for high-risk cardiology patients

The University of Virginia Children’s Hospital has been able to use donations from Extra Life to aid with the Building HOPE program. This program allows families and doctors to work together to monitor pediatric cardiology patients once they leave the hospital. Vitals such as oxygen levels, weight, and food and liquid intake data is sent through secure transmission to the team at UVA, who monitor the data in real-time.

1. Provided the gift of unrestricted funds

No day at a member CMN Hospital is ever the same. The needs of patients, new research, emerging technology means our needs are constantly changing. The number one way the $30 million raised by Extra Life has impacted Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals is through the gift of unrestricted funds. All our member hospitals use community donations to meet the changing needs of their local community, the way they need it, when they need it.

Thank you to all those who support and participate in Extra Life — your continued support is helping make miracles happen for kids treated at CMN Hospitals. Join Extra Life and help kids in your community at