7-18-19 ER pediatric mural - Clarice Vrambout.jpg

Stillwater Area High School art student Clarice Vrambout. (Submitted photo)

A hidden pictures mural is helping make a visit to the Emergency Department a little more welcoming for children at Lakeview Hospital.

Colleagues in the Emergency Department decided to transform the pediatric exam room into a more fun and friendly space to help improve the ER experience for children and families.

The highlight is an ocean mural, featuring scuba-diving Sphinx cats and 12 hidden objects for patients to find. It was designed and painted by Stillwater Area High School art student Clarice Vrambout, who submitted three designs to the Emergency Department team from which to select. Clarice donated her time – about a month in total – to paint the mural, which takes up one entire wall of the pediatric exam room, and flows on to two connecting walls.

“This was my first mural and first piece of art in a public place,” said Clarice, who is now heading to the Ontario College of Art and Design in Toronto to study for her bachelor degree. “I was pretty nervous about that, but I hear they have been getting positive comments about the mural from families, and it’s cool to have an impact on people like that.”

Other features of the project include a pediatric privacy curtain and a wagon for parents to give their children rides. Registered nurses Sally and Heidi led the project.

“We’ve gotten very positive feedback since the mural went up,” said Sally. “A child patient came in very upset and scared, and the minute he walked into the room and saw the mural, he immediately stopped crying and calmed down as he started looking for the hidden pictures. It was a very dramatic change in his demeanor. He was instantly more calm and engaged.”

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