The Whole Child

Block Number: 156


McDowell Pediatrics is the latest of McDowell Hospital’s clinics to join the McDowell Quilt Trail. On Tuesday, March 3, 2014 Block #156 entitled “The Whole Child” was installed on the office building located at 387 U.S. Highway 70 West by volunteers Mike Lucas and Jack Raker. The Certificate of Authenticity was presented to the staff and hospital personnel by Chairwoman Jill Lucas.

McDowell Pediatrics, a full-service pediatric provider, opened formally in July 2008 and has 117 years of combined pediatric experience. There are fifteen patient rooms and in addition to the “well child” check-in waiting room, there is an isolated “sick child” waiting room in an effort to prevent spreading infectious germs to healthy patients. The practice sees approximately 3,800 patients a year and the staff is available to answer questions that the parent or caregiver may have. Infants, children, teens and young adults are seen up to the age of 18 to diagnose and treat medical problems.

Services include but are not limited to routine wellness and sports exams. Immunizations, developmental assessments, illness, injury, allergies, adolescent gynecology and more complex screening for such things as autism and ADHD are addressed. The practice provides complete service in all aspects of physical, mental, behavioral and emotional well-being and education through every stage of development from infant to adult. If an issue arises where a specialist is required, a referral will be made, however the staff will strive to remain involved in the child’s healthcare throughout treatment. Office hours are Monday through Thursday 8 AM - 7 PM, Friday 8 AM -5 PM and Saturday 8 AM – 12 PM. Walk-ins are welcome from 8 AM- 9:15 AM daily and a nurse triage is available for after hours care.

A Cardiologist visits the practice one day a month and a grant will equip the office with a Telehealth system in the future. Telehealth technology is an innovative service that provides physicians with a convenient and efficient way to refer patients to a specialist for real-time personalized medical advice, information and treatment through the use of computer cameras and screens fitted with specialized tools. Patients and doctors are able to see and talk with the specialist without incurring the time and expense of traveling.

McDowell Pediatrics employs three Board Certified Pediatricians, all with impressive backgrounds. Dr .Karen Olson, Pediatrician (MD, FAAP), has over thirty years of experience with children in every stage of development. Pediatric Specialist Dr. Zane G. Kalter, (MD) joined the clinic bringing more than forty years experience from a private practice in Orlando, Florida. A newer member of the team is Dr. Maureen Ben-Davies (MD, MPH) who served as a consultant in food security research at RTI International in Durham, N.C. A child’s health is a priority and these three qualified physicians provide dependable and compassionate diagnosis and treatment for children of all ages.

Working along with the doctors are Toni Marsh, Practice Manager and two Pediatric Nurse Practitioners, Courtney P. Morris and Angela Allen-Helms. McDowell Pediatrics also works on a rotating system with medical students attending the University of North Carolina in Asheville. The students gain practical knowledge as an “intern” assisting the in-house doctors as they work with their patients. The program provides the student with a beneficial “hands on” experience.

The term “pediatrics” comes from two Greek words meaning “child” and “doctor” (“healer of children”) and became known as a specialized field of medicine in the mid-19th century when it was understood and recognized that the differences in a growing and maturing patient necessitated different treatment both physically and physiologically from that of an adult. Abraham Jacobi (1830-1919) is known as the “father of pediatrics” for his many contributions to the field, having received his medical training in Germany where he was born, then later practicing in New York City.

“The Whole Child” depicts intertwining stick figures encircling the 4 foot by 4 foot block, representing children joined by a central point. It is a cheerful and beautiful kaleidoscope of colors displayed on a beige background and is easily viewed from Highway 70 West. Pediatric Nurse Practitioner says “Our providers are very excited to have the opportunity to take part in the McDowell County Quilt Trail Program. Our quilt will beautifully represent our team’s guiding principles and philosophy of caring for the amazing children and families in our community.”

The McDowell Healthcare Foundation further expounds on the block’s special meaning as follows: “The Whole Child Quilt Block reflects McDowell Pediatrics’ commitment to our youngest patients. This concept, so beautifully illustrated in our McDowell County Quilt Trail Program piece, has a dual meaning. Put simply, we are committed to keeping our youngest patients whole. This means compassionate care when they are sick and programs that focus on prevention and wellness. We are also targeting the whole pediatric patient, with comprehensive care that includes general pediatric services, pediatric cardiology and behavioral health. This will allow us to care for your child’s growing needs now and into the future.”

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