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Pediactric care clinic provides quality care through prevention
Capt. (Dr.) LauraVoegele, 81st Medical Operations Squadron pediatrician, examines 5-year-old Kevin Evatt Jan. 12 in the pediatric acute care walk-in clinic located within the Keesler emergency department. Kevin’s parents are Staff Sgt. Jeffrey and Mary Evatt, 334th Training Squadron. (U.S. Air Force photo by Steve Pivnick)
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Pediatric care clinic provides quality care through prevention

Posted 1/19/2011   Updated 1/20/2011 Email story   Print story

    


by Maj. (Dr.) Eric Flake
81st Medical Operations Squadron


1/19/2011 - KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. -- Keesler's pediatric clinic currently cares for more than 6,500 children from birth to 18 years of age and welcomes an average of 50 newborns to the clinic each month.

The clinic staff strives to provide the highest quality of care and a medical home for all military children. In accordance with the American Academy of Pediatrics, the clinic's four pillars of prevention are:

Immunizations -- The clinic's goal is to have 100 percent of children up-to-date with the latest immunizations, including the annual flu vaccine, since the benefits far outweigh the risks. At every clinic visit, providers will have the immunization record available for review with the parent to identify any needed vaccinations.

Breathe Easy ---This monthly preventive asthma education is available and recommended to all patients with asthma. This proactive approach has significantly reduced clinic and emergency department visits as well as hospitalizations.

Obesity prevention -- Keesler pediatricians have teamed up with the inaugural task force of the Southern Regional Institute to Conquer Childhood Obesity. The task force addresses this health crisis by working with multiple government agencies and corporations to empower the family and community in which military members reside to make healthy nutrition and physical activity choices.

Reach Out and Read -- Early literacy promotion provides new books to children during well-child visits. This is the longest clinic-based literacy initiative in the Department of Defense and has been a part of Keesler's pediatric clinic for the past 10 years.

The last two pillars are of particular significance since Mississippi has the highest rates of obesity and illiteracy in the nation.

Other services provided by Keesler's pediatric team include evaluation and treatment of mental health concerns and behavioral difficulties through the Supporting Toddlers to Adolescents Reach Success clinic. A pediatrician is on call 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to answer acute concerns.

Parents and patients are encouraged to complete customer comment cards that are reviewed weekly to continue to improve services.



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