“Fraser has been a member of the Department of Psychology at BC Children’s Hospital for more than two-and-a-half years. He works with the medical psychologists in the hospital, caring for children with a variety of health issues (mostly children with epilepsy or other neurological conditions.) Sometimes children meet Fraser when they come for an outpatient appointment with a psychologist, other times Fraser visits with patients when they are staying in the hospital.
No matter the location, Fraser works along side the hospital’s psychologists, providing comfort, breaking down barriers, and facilitating healing with his wagging tail and gentle demeanour.
Many of the children and families who meet Fraser are under a great deal of stress. They are dealing with a chronic, debilitating illness or are trying to cope with a new (and often scary) diagnosis. The children have been poked and prodded and are often hesitant about meeting yet another doctor.
Fraser facilitates our ability to build trusting relationships with children and families in a short period of time. He makes it safe to talk about scary feelings or experiences. He is a calm and gentle companion for a child or parent who is stressed. He provides unconditional affection for the child who is struggling to make connections or accept what is happening to them. Our patients are more interactive with Fraser in the room. He makes a child’s time at the hospital less intimidating and provides moments of lightness during an otherwise difficult time. Many of the patients and families who meet Fraser develop a deep connection with him and request to see him when they come back to the hospital. Through Fraser, relationships are formed, communication is facilitated, and healing is promoted.
It’s not just the patients and families who benefit from Fraser’s sensitive, gentle and friendly disposition, the hospital staff seek him out too. He’s all too willing to oblige when a staff member needs a cuddle or a good game of tug to relieve the stress of a difficult day. He can be goofy and silly, providing levity and distraction during serious times. He is well known in the hallways of the hospital and is often greeted by name. Fraser’s presence is healing, and with him at our sides we are all better clinicians.
Fraser loves his job at BC Children’s Hospital. Having worked with him for two-and-a-half years, I can honestly say that he is really good at what he does. He has become a fully-integrated member of the health care team. He displays the devotion, compassion, and care we all strive for in our work with our patients and families. By working along side the hospital psychologists, Fraser takes on the role of co-therapist, healer, and companion. We are lucky to have him here and are grateful to PADS for sharing him with us.”
– Dr. Sare Akdag and Fraser