NF Center Complementary Care Programs Go Virtual

At the Washington University NF Center, we believe in the value of extending medical care for our families beyond the walls of the clinic. As such, we have pioneered several successful therapy programs, including Beat NF, Club NF and Teen NF.
The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged our team to find creative ways to offer these essential therapy programs in a safe manner. To overcome these obstacles, we have transitioned all therapy programs to a virtual format via Zoom.
Our entire Beat NF program was reimagined this spring, and now provides quality musical programming and therapy in a Zoom format. Prior to each live session, video recordings were made of each song introducing the weekly instrument and highlighted musician. Each of the five weekly sessions were performed live, with our music therapist leading participants in video recordings, while our physical therapist guided children through the weekly gross motor skill. After each session, participants were emailed their weekly “homework”, representing skills learned in the session, to continue practicing at home. We look forward to continuing this virtual program for the spring 2021 season.
Club NF participants are still be able to enjoy meaningful and rewarding events virtually, while our skilled physical therapists work with each child to improve gross motor, fine motor and/or social skills. At our first Virtual Club NF event in October, children were able to visit a working farm from the safety of their own living room. The NF Center Coordinator and our team physical therapist interacted with the animals and provided education about the farm (social/emotional therapy). In addition, children were led through a corn maze (social therapy), and then worked on craftwork (fine motor/executive function therapy). All Club NF participants had a wonderful time! Stay tuned as more events are announced.
Teen NF was also successfully transitioned to a virtual Zoom format. Participants were able to join with the NF Center Coordinator and Teen NF psychologist, Dr. Kimberly Sirl, for six bi-weekly sessions. These sessions included four meetings with group format interactions with Dr. Sirl to build confidence, work on social skills and foster leadership skill development, followed by two “Life Skills” classes led by an educational specialist from the Saint Louis Science Center. Our newly added Life Skills classes focused on “Health and Wellbeing” and “Networking and Developing Your Brand”. We are looking forward to providing the same 6-session, bi-weekly format for our spring 2021 session.
If you any questions about our programs or would like to attend one of our future events, please contact our NF Center Coordinator: Jennifer Traber,