Creativity kept this star alive.
Bernie, or "Bern" as her friends at Mott call her, was born 10 weeks premature with Down syndrome and a complex congenital heart condition. In her first year, she had three open heart operations at C.S. Mott Children's Hospital and experienced over 20 episodes of cardiac arrest. Just when her family thought they were running out of options, Bernie's pediatric cardiac surgeon Jennifer Hirsch devised a creative plan to keep her alive. She was back home with her sisters just eight weeks later, after 220 days in the hospital, to celebrate her first birthday. Today, Bernie is a super-star at Mott Children's Hospital - unable to step foot inside without being greeted with hugs and high-fives.
Learn more about the Michigan Congenital Heart Center at U-M C.S. Mott Children's Hospital.