OSF opens Urbana clinic with range of pediatric specialists

OSF opens Urbana clinic with range of pediatric specialists

URBANA — OSF HealthCare Children's Hospital of Illinois has launched a pediatric multispecialty clinic in Urbana, across the street from OSF Heart of Mary Medical Center.

Already seeing patients there are pediatric cardiology and pediatric surgery specialists, and they'll be joined by a pediatric hematology/oncology specialist in mid-July, according to OSF HealthCare.

"For all three of those sub-specialties, many of the families may have significant follow-up, and that's the idea — to provide as much of that follow-up care close to home," said the hospital's director of business and program development, Mike Wells.

The OSF children's hospital in Peoria serves hundreds of kids from this area, not only for inpatient care but outpatient visits, Wells said.

In the past 12 months, that included 835 pediatric patients from the Champaign-Urbana and Danville areas, with 243 of them admitted, according to OSF. Nearly 1,500 children from those local areas were seen in an outpatient clinic setting in the past year.

The Urbana clinic will be OSF Children's Hospital of Illinois' 17th satellite clinic location. It's on the third floor of OSF's medical office building at 1405 W. Park St., U.

Already set up for medical offices, the space just needed a bit of remodeling to make it more kid-friendly and add a lab, Wells said.

Medical advances have allowed for an increasing amount of pediatric care to be delivered in outpatient settings, and this new satellite clinic will spare many families an out-of-town drive, he said.

For example, pre-surgery and post-surgery consultations and follow-up visits for kids with heart conditions can be done close to home on an outpatient basis. Sickle-cell anemia can also be managed well in an outpatient setting, he said.

The Urbana clinic also has an office employee, along with a social worker available on both clinic and non-clinic days, Wells said.

The social worker can help families navigate the system, bundle out-of-town medical visits that are needed and help arrange for meal vouchers and free overnight stays at OSF's family house lodging in Peoria if needed, Wells said.

For now, pediatric cardiology is available at the OSF Urbana clinic one day a week and pediatric surgery consultations are available one day every other week. Pediatric hematology/oncology visits will be available there once a month.

The office hours in Urbana will be reevaluated based on patient volume, Wells said. The first three specialties were selected based on the number and types of referrals being made to the OSF children's hospital from this region, and other specialties may be added later, he said.

"We are currently doing a needs assessment to determine whatever specialties are needed there and our own internal capacity to provide them," he said.

For patients served by the Carle health system, Carle is also in the process of expanding pediatric specialties in the area in upcoming months to address growing needs, according to Carle spokeswoman Jamie Mullin.

Carle currently provides children's specialties in cardiology, surgery, gastroenterology, cochlear implants, neurology, pulmonology and those addressing developmental and behavioral issues.

On the way is a new pediatric geneticist, another pediatric neurologist, a pediatric intensivist (for treatment of the sickest children), a pediatric endocrinologist and another neonatologist. Also being added are two more general surgeons and another allergist to treat both children and adults, she said.

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