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Six-year-old Keana is an energetic first grader full of questions that her mother is happy to answer. It’s a joyful contrast to the frightening times before Keana was born, when doctors questioned whether she would even survive. She was diagnosed with VATER syndrome, a series of birth defects that affect nearly every system in her tiny body, resulting in more than 20 surgeries in her first years of life.

Keana spent five months in the Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU) and was a frequent resident in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) at St. Luke’s Children’s Hospital, receiving care from more than seven specialists over her first three years. Continuing therapy has helped her learn to walk and overcome swallowing challenges. She started kindergarten with her peers, reads at grade level, and counts to 100.

“She’s unstoppable,” says Keana’s mom, who’s grateful her busy, curious little girl can receive the wide range of care she needs all in one place. “Our lives would have been very different if we couldn’t get this level of care in Boise. Every doctor at St. Luke’s has played a role in saving her life. It’s nothing less than a miracle.”

  1. Kean
  2. Prescott