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Bundaberg nine-year-old Maddison was first diagnosed with Rhabdomyosarcoma (RMS), a tumour of muscle, in 2017 and has since spent a staggering 700 days in hospital. Now cancer free, she has set her sights on returning to school full-time, thanks in part to the support of her hospital super hero, paediatric surgical registrar Dr Narelle Lintern.
Maddison’s mother, Vanessa (pictured above), told QSuper they first met Dr Lintern during Maddison’s longest admission, which lasted 167 days.
“It was such a scary thing that was happening to her and Dr Lintern was great at taking the time to explain everything to Maddison to make sure she didn’t feel scared whenever she had a procedure, and to gain her consent,” Vanessa said.
The special bond that Maddison formed with Dr Lintern carried her through some of the most challenging times of her treatment.
Through Maddison and her family’s nomination, Dr Lintern has been recognised as the latest recipient of the Juiced TV Super Hero Award, supported by QSuper.
Vanessa told QSuper that even if Dr Lintern only had five minutes to see Maddison in the day, she would give her every second of her complete, undivided attention.
“Maddison wants to be a fashion designer when she is older, so when Maddison would point out Dr Lintern’s pink shoes, they would talk at length about them and the next time we would see her she would be wearing pink for Maddison,” said Vanessa.
Even throughout the complexities of Maddison’s treatment, Dr Lintern would take the time to ensure Maddison understood the procedures.
“As a doctor you have to acknowledge that you’re possibly meeting people on the worst day of their life, giving them confronting information and life-changing news,” said Dr Lintern.
“I can truly say that Maddison and her family have touched my career, and I am so chuffed to share this experience with them.
“My hope for Maddison’s future is that she has a happy and healthy life that involves her spending not nearly as much time in hospital.”
QSuper is proud of our longstanding partnership with Juiced TV, and the opportunities we present patients and their families to recognise their personal healthcare heroes.
“I just want to thank Dr Lintern through QSuper’s award for making everything a little bit less scary for Maddison. She is an amazing doctor and the support she provides families has such an impact,” Vanessa said.
“It may not seem like a big deal, but to families in hospital it is the difference between their child being able to go back for treatment, or never wanting to step foot in hospital again.”
Watch the most recent episode of the Juiced TV Super Hero Awards here:
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