Choice of Gown Design puts Texas Health Cleburne Pediatric Patients at Ease

CLEBURNE, Texas — For 21-month-old Justice Kirk, the prospect of surgery to put in ear tubes was scary. But with the creativity of the surgical staff and volunteers at Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Cleburne, getting to choose a hospital gown with puppies and baseball players made things just a little bit better.

Justice Kirk
Justice Kirk (center) shows off the gown he chose for a recent surgery.

“I thought it was adorable,” Sarah Kirk, Justice’s mother, said of the choice of surgical gowns. “The children-specific gowns are more homey and help take the kids’ minds off their surgery.”

Dr. Ted Benke, an otolaryngologist (more commonly known as an ear, nose and throat specialist) and a physician on the medical staff at Texas Health Cleburne, treats many of the children in for surgery at the hospital. “The gowns are a fun thing to do,” Benke said. “Typically children’s surgeries are performed in a surgical suite that is part of the outpatient surgery department, which also helps put families at ease knowing the child is just going down the hall for surgery.”

For the past few months, children who come in for surgery at Texas Health Cleburne have had their choices of fighter pilots or polka dots — to name a few. Nurses and other hospital employees donated the fabric and then volunteers from the hospital’s Auxiliary and Lebanon Baptist Church made the gowns.

“We’re delighted that the volunteers and others in the community stepped up to help put our youngest patients at ease,” said Blake Kretz, hospital president. “This whole idea came from a discussion between our volunteers and our outpatient surgery nurses and involved collaboration between both groups to turn this idea into a reality. It’s wonderful to see the community involved in caring for our patients.”

About Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Cleburne
Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Cleburne is a 137-bed acute-care, full-service hospital that has served Cleburne and the Johnson County area since 1986. The hospital’s services include surgery, women’s services, urology, orthopedics and ear, nose and throat care. Texas Health Cleburne, an affiliate of the faith-based, nonprofit Texas Health Resources system, has been recognized with the 2007 Premier/Carescience Select Practice National Quality Award. For more information, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit

About Texas Health Resources
Texas Health Resources is one of the largest faith-based, nonprofit health care delivery systems in the United States and the largest in North Texas in terms of patients served. Texas Health’s system of 14 hospitals includes Texas Health Harris Methodist, Texas Health Arlington Memorial, and Texas Health Presbyterian, and an organization for medical research and education. Texas Health Organization for Physicians and Texas Health Physicians Group provide a variety of models for engagement with physicians. Texas Health Partners is a joint venture development and management company owned by Texas Health Resources. Texas Health MedSynergies is a joint venture that offers physicians a range of office management and other business services to support their practices. Texas Health is a corporate member or partner in six additional hospitals and surgery centers. For more information, call 1-877-THR-WELL, or visit

Doctors on the medical staff practice independently and are not employees or agents of the hospital.