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River Park treats patients to sensitive Santa
Bryce Carr speaks with Santa Claus during his recent visit to River Park Hospital. The hospital sponsored an event called Sensitive Santa. His visit to the Pediatric Outpatient Department was for children who might be overwhelmed by meeting at a mall with Santa due to their senses being overwhelmed by lights and movement.
Fear of Santa might not always be because of his thick, white beard and bright red coat. Instead, there are many things that can tap that fear in children.However, according to Carly Bruce of Saint Thomas River Park Hospital, the various sensory challenges that cause some children to be uncomfortable meeting Santa Claus in a public setting should not deny them the opportunity. That’s why the Pediatric Outpatient Department held its own party recently, complete with a sensory-friendly Santa.“It is a Santa who is more sensory friendly for our patients that maybe get a little bit too overwhelmed by crowds at the mall or noises,” said Bruce.The sensitive Santa appearance helped make the Christmas gathering more inclusive for all the children who attended.