Ambassador Highlight: Isla

Isla Mock was in 4th-grade discovering her passion for sports, taking the field in a dual capacity for soccer and softball, when she faced a life-altering challenge. Two-and-a-half years ago, a traumatic accident threatened not just her future in sports, but in life.

Following an ATV accident, Isla’s world turned upside down. She found herself in the middle of a medical journey that included a 51-day stay at UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital, where she was admitted to the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit and the trauma unit.

“Isla’s right leg, from knee to ankle, degloved,” said her mother, Joni Mock. “She lost all of her skin tissue.”

Because of this serious medical emergency due to potential blood loss or infection, Mock was rushed to two hospitals to be stabilized before they could transfer her to the Level 1 Trauma Center at UF Health Shands. Under the care of experts at UF Health Shands, she underwent three skin graft surgeries, two additional surgeries in the operating room, and numerous dressing changes.

Throughout the trying process, Isla leaned on the hospital’s support services, including Arts in Medicine as well as Child Life, to help reinvigorate her spirit during the most challenging days.

“The treatment, care and rehab Isla received and continues to receive at UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital has been amazing,” Mock said. “We are so thankful for the hospitals’ medical experts and what they did for Isla.”

In the most difficult time of her life, Isla’s courage and strength never wavered. Due to her bravery and the support of occupational and physical therapy teams at UF Health, Isla was back on the field within a year-and-a-half after the accident.

“She continued to push forward and overcome. Nothing holds her back. She is active in softball and plans to pick up volleyball in 7th grade, and she even ice skates and snow skis! Isla has been incredible through it all and is our hero,” Mock said.

In Joni Mock’s eyes, Isla’s recovery stands as a testament to the commitment of UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital to Isla and her family.

“Isla has had a miraculous recovery because of Shands. We will forever remember our time at Shands and what a godsend it was for Isla and our family.”

The Level 1 pediatric trauma center at UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital handles the most complex pediatric injury cases and stands apart from many other centers with a strong commitment to research, education and a continuous focus on improving care outcomes. Charitable support through Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals ensures the UF Health Pediatric Trauma Program and the patients they serve, like Isla, will have the care they need when they need it most.