Our Beginnings


Katie Murphy gets her PICC line installed at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital

Katie shows off her PICC line after surgery, as the attending nurse pulls aside the standard issue cotton webbed cover.

Katie Murphy is the founder and inspiration for The PICColina Foundation. Katie was diagnosed with Stage III Hodgkin’s Disease in November 2009. She had just turned 16 and was a junior in High School. The emotional and physical impact of her diagnosis did not slow her down for long. She took her treatments very seriously but longed to regain some of her sense of style and her “free spirit”. 

When her PICC line was surgically installed in her arm, the medical staff covered it with a standard cotton webbed cover. In her opinion, it made her look and feel like she was sick and it was a constant reminder that she was a patient. This was not helping her recovery. So she fashioned a more attractive cover for herself and it garnered much attention from the oncology nursing staff and her doctors. Her friends at school could always count on Katie’s PICC cover to set the mood for events and parties. Utilizing this form of self-expression helped keep her spirits up while dealing with her serious illness. 

While she was undergoing treatment, she would have liked to share her creations with other kids who were also undergoing chemotherapy treatments but she needed to focus on getting better first. When she finally did completed her treatments, she decided to start The PICColina Foundation to making sure that her designs could be made available to other pediatric oncology patients.

Now more than four years later, Katie is Junior at Chapman University and on her way to finishing her degree in Studio Art. She is more dedicated than ever to helping children deal with the challenges of cancer and other severe illnesses and plans to develop art programs for children in oncology hospitals where they will, among other things, be able to design their own expressive PICC covers.