Erin Brandon is a 5-star nurse practitioner. She has been there every step of the way since our daughter’s Rett Syndrome diagnosis. She demonstrates extraordinary clinical skills while developing a special connection with families and those under her care. Erin responds promptly and with compassion to all our inquiries, is on time, empathetic, professional, always friendly, even in stressful situations, knowledgeable, detail-oriented, answers questions honestly without judgment, no matter how many we ask, shares important resources, keeps us informed, and has a heart of gold. She has supported our family since the diagnosis and assisted with everything from diet, constipation, GERD, rashes, mobility, and communication. Erin has even taken time out of her busy day to help guide our family on non-medical-related information such as the availability of other supports and potential funding, and how to go about accessing them for our daughter. We realize that we could not have gotten through this first year after diagnosis without Erin. We never hesitate to reach out to her as we know we will receive great advice, support, assistance, and next steps, always! The prompt replies to emails and phone calls, the expertise shared at every interaction, the support and knowledge have been beyond appreciated as we navigate through a life we never imagined. She is a true lifeline and a saving grace, multiple times over! We are so blessed to have Erin on our care team.
Erin is an exemplary nurse practitioner who provides service and cares for children with medical complexities, including children with cerebral palsy and children with Rett Syndrome. I work in close partnership with Erin, and this has allowed me special insights into how Erin approaches her role. She is evidence-informed and stays on top of the evidence relevant to her clients. She also shares evidence to inform the team involved with the care of children she is involved in. This helps to elevate knowledge broadly. A small example of this is Erin sharing a study on tetrabenazine that had just been published in February so that the team could be aware of evolving knowledge on a relatively new medication being used for children with hyperkinetic and dyskinetic cerebral palsy.
Erin works hard to establish strong partnerships with the children and families she is following. She is aware of the importance of shared decision-making and coaching and incorporates this into her practice daily. Families feel heard and can express their preferences and priorities openly. This ensures that families are receiving care that is important to them. Erin is following children with medical complexities, and this, therefore, necessitates a holistic approach to care and significant efforts in coordination to ensure the child's health is maximized. Erin is organized, thorough and excellent at communication both with the families as well as the health team at Holland Bloorview and in the community.
Erin truly is a top-notch nurse practitioner who is always there to support, help, listen and make a change and we are so lucky to have her on our team to assist with ongoing care and issues.
I have been part of the Rett Clinic for 8 years and my very first appointment was with Erin. Her smile welcomed my daughter and me when we walked through those doors I was so nervous meeting a whole new team, but Erin made all that go away she is one of the most caring, friendly, and passionate people I have ever met. I honestly don’t know how my family and my daughter would have navigated through the last 8 years if it wasn’t for her. From phone calls, school meetings, and talking with doctors while my daughter has been in hospital. Hearing her voice on the phone when I call when I’m having a rough time with something instantly calms me. Erin is honestly an angel on earth who does her job to the fullest and has helped my family so much. Thanks for all you do for my family. We love you.
Pediatrician, neurologist, physiotherapist, occupational therapist, speech therapist, orthotist, feeding specialist, dentist, social worker, early interventionist, assistive technology specialist, gastroenterologist, teacher, geneticist, respirologist, pharmacist, emergency physician...
This is a non-exhaustive list of specialists a typical child with Rett syndrome might encounter. It is also a list of the different hats Erin Brandon, a nurse practitioner at Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, wears on any given day of the week. As parents, we deal with a constantly evolving list of symptoms and the accompanying uncertainty that comes with virtually every medical decision made. We consult with specialists who sometimes give us blank stares when we try to explain the intricacies of Rett syndrome. Erin is always available to discuss options and to give guidance as we attempt to do right by our kids. A constant refrain in our small network of local parents is “ask Erin”. While there is no medical discipline that specializes specifically in Rett syndrome, she is in fact our Rett specialist. Erin advocates, coordinates, considers and cares for and about our kids.
However, perhaps even more important is that Erin sees our kids. And by sees, I don’t mean just in the clinic. She sees past the diagnosis. She sees past the breath-holding, the seizures, the apraxia, the dystonia. She sees our kids for whom they are as smart, funny, strong, sassy, beautiful individuals who when given the right supports and interventions, can thrive, shine, and lead full lives