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Local Mother Honors Infants Born with Heart Defects during American Heart Month with Healing Ceremony

After the loss of her own son due to a heart defect, she wants to spread love to others in the same situation with a gift basket and blessing

SANTA MARIA, CA – February 25, 2022 – February is American Heart Health Month, and one local mother is raising awareness of congenital heart disease by recognizing children with heart defects. 

Patricia Navarrete was the proud parent of baby Josiah, an infant who was born with a heart defect and was then monitored by Marian Regional Medical Center’s Medically Vulnerable Pediatric (MVP) program, which cares for infants and children with special medical needs in the comfort of their own home. 

“Families are not alone in this journey, and the journey doesn’t end,” says Patricia. “The flowers being presented at today’s ceremony are gestures of love in Josiah’s honor. Sometimes, all you need is love! Josiah’s love continues to live through all of us every day.”

Josiah passed away two years ago due to the defect, and Patricia is using that experience to honor Josiah’s memory and bring joy to other families and infants dealing with the disease. In a small socially-distanced ceremony located on the hospital campus, twelve MVP families joined together in the hospital’s healing garden to receive a gift basket, toys, and flowers from Patricia, as well as a blessing over each of the infants. 

“Our outreach to this medically vulnerable population is continuous, so we build lasting relationships with the families,” says Marian Regional Medical Center MVP Program Manager, Susan Rasmussen. “These families manage the ongoing care for their high-risk children, so it is especially meaningful to see them honored today.”

Marian Regional Medical Center staff support these families at their homes, providing essential resources and care to ensure they thrive.

[PHOTOS BELOW: Top: Patty Navarrete and daughters - Middle: food baskets - Bottom: toys]


About Marian Regional Medical Center

Marian Regional Medical Center is a state-of-the-art, 191-bed medical center located in Santa Maria, California. The modern facility is home to a broad array of services including a level III trauma center, a level III neonatal intensive care unit, a nationally recognized cardiac care center, and boasts the Central Coast’s only Comprehensive Community Cancer Program as recognized by the Commission on Cancer. Marian has been recognized for quality and patient safety and named one of America’s 250 Best Hospitals by Healthgrades®.

Marian Regional Medical Center together with Arroyo Grande Community Hospital in Arroyo Grande, and French Hospital Medical Center in San Luis Obispo, comprise Dignity Health Central Coast, a network of hospitals, physicians, and outpatient services including physician offices, ambulatory surgery centers, technologically-advanced laboratories and imaging centers, and a full service home health agency. 


Publish date: 

Friday, February 25, 2022