St. Jude assigns patients numbers to each child that becomes a patient. This practice is common throughout hospitals, however, St. Jude’s number is a little bit different than other hospitals. When you are given a patient number it is actually that–the number of what patient you are in the entire history of the hospital. You see, when Danny Thomas opened the doors to the hospital in February of 1962, the first patient that the hospital accepted was Patient #1. On November 14, 1994, Amber Trisler became Patient #13523.
That means that 13,522 children between February 4, 1962, and November 14, 1994, had been diagnosed with cancer and treated at St. Jude. In 32 years, they had treated over 13,000 children that had cancer. I don’t know about you, but those are staggering numbers. This is one facility researching and treating diseases that no child should have to endure.
The wonderful place that is St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is a topic for another post on another day. For now though, Amber will always be the 13,523rd child that was treated at St. Jude. Fortunately, Patient #13523 is a 21 year cancer survivor.