North Versailles day care will cater to special-needs kids
A day care center for children with special needs will open in a 7,500-square-foot portion of Carmel Square along Route 48 in North Versailles Township.
“The purpose is to provide day health care for medically fragile children,” said Jennifer Parco, administrative director of Pediatria HealthCare LLC's newest outlet. “It is set up as a day care based on children's ages and developmental levels.”
Its will accommodate up to 48 kids 8 years old and younger, with one staff member for every three children. Each room will have a nursing station.
“All the skills I have learned over the years have been put into one job,” said Roxanne Cook, who will manage nursing care.
Parco said the core staff of registered nurses, licensed practical nurses and aides and a bus driver have been hired.
Buses will transport youngsters from within an hour's driving distance of the center at 1183 Jacks Run Road.
“We will have a designated site for a parent who wants to meet the bus, or parents can drop their kids off at the center,” Parco said.
There will be a nurse on the bus, and all staffers who ride with the children will be qualified to administer first aid or cardio-pulmonary resuscitation.
Pediatria has a license from the state Department of Health to operate in North Versailles. Township code enforcement officer Allen R. Wagner said a specialized exhaust system had to be installed at the facility.
Pediatria is waiting to receive a Medicaid provider number.
“Whenever that number comes, I can admit the first child,” Parco said. “We do have a couple of children waiting to come.”
There has been a lot of interest.
“A lot of calls, a lot of walk-ins,” Parco said. “It has been amazing. Since the sign went up it has been non-stop.”
It can be confusing. Some think a physician's office is going in at the long-vacant space in Carmel Square, a strip mall across Route 48 from East Allegheny High School that houses Three Rivers Hospice.
“We do have a medical adviser,” Parco said. “He's Dr. Matthew Keller of East Suburban Pediatrics.”
According to East Suburban's website, Keller's specialties are treatment of asthma, allergies and children with disabilities.
Parco and Cook have extensive experience.
“I was with home care agencies for 15 years,” Parco said. “I was a supervisor, a nurse manager. They were all in Allegheny County. Before that, I was on the staff at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh.”
Parco earned her bachelor of science degree in nursing from the University of Pittsburgh in 1990.
Parco hails from the Monroeville-Penn Hills area. Cook grew up in North Huntingdon Township.
“I've been a pediatric nurse for 23 years,” said Cook, who earned an associate degree from West Penn Hospital School of Nursing in 1990.
Cook worked with critical care and discharge planning at Children's Hospital, then went into home care for 10 years. She talked about the clinical nurse manager's job with her husband Skip, who formerly worked for Pediatric Services of America.
“He was the director of their durable medical equipment until seven years ago,” Cook said.
Pediatria wants to establish more ties.
“We are trying to develop a liaison with the appropriate disciplines at the University of Pittsburgh, such as child development, occupational therapy and sports medicine,” said Wagner, an adjunct professor at Pitt.
The new outlet is Pediatria's 14th “day health center,” joining four in Pennsylvania and others in Georgia, Florida and Louisiana.
“This will allow families to work or go to school,” Parco said. “The children will receive all medically-prescribed treatments, medications, therapy, feedings and respiratory treatments.”
Pediatria provides private duty nursing in Georgia, South Carolina, Massachusetts and in Harrisburg, Philadelphia and Scranton. A private duty office will be located next to the new center.
Wagner said the facility is good news for the township, which is actively seeking to attract new business.
“Things are starting to turn around,” Wagner said. “Two new entities have come into the township in the past couple of days, and a third and fourth are negotiating.”
Wagner announced Pediatria's plans at the May meeting of the township board of commissioners.
“New businesses are again finding North Versailles a development-friendly and supportive community,” Wagner said.
Patrick Cloonan is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161 ext. 1967, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- McKeesport middle school students get taste of crime-scene investigations
- Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank ramps up for holiday season
- West Mifflin mayor upset over donations ending up with school district
- 3 Steel Valley men face trials in home invasion
- South Allegheny dress code changes pass despite pleas to hold off
- Troupe transfers beloved ‘Charlie Brown’ TV special to stage
- Attorney returns to alma mater to help McKeesport students chart life path
- No hike predicted in Port Vue real estate levy, based on preliminary budget
- Elizabeth Township buys former Girl Scout camp
- U.S. Steel increases commitment to innovation, including Waterfront center
- White Oak to make budget info available