ChildLab center off to strong start

Published 10:22 am Wednesday, August 12, 2009

IRONTON — Nearly a month after its debut, Nationwide Children’s Hospital and its ChildLab center are finding the Ironton market and the favorable response they have been receiving to its liking.

“It’s been great,” said Tracie King, physician liaison for Children’s Hospital. “A lot of the feedback we have been getting from the community is that they are very excited to have us here.”

King along with the rest of the ChildLab and Close To Home staff took time to celebrate a successful first 30 days as Ironton’s newest medical facility late Tuesday afternoon in hosting an open house.

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The event was attended by Ironton Mayor Rich Blankenship and D.R. Gossett, CEO of the Ironton-Lawrence County Community Action Organization, along with Children’s Hospital staff and physicians.

Launched on July 13, the Columbus-based hospital’s ChildLab clinic and Close To Home Center brought one of the nation’s top children’s facilities to downtown Ironton.

Located at 407 S. Third St., ChildLab clinics are pediatric reference laboratories that allow lab tests to be conducted for patients not only in the Children’s Hospital system, but a variety of health care centers and hospitals.

They offer specialized care for all children, newborns through young adults.

King said since the clinic opened it has been non-stop.

“Many of the slots we have available have been maxed out.”

Also located in the same building is the hospital’s Close To Home Center. King said Close To Home is able to provide pediatric surgery, neurology and urology specialty services with three separate clinics.

The pediatric surgery clinic offers consultation and post-surgical follow-up care.

The neurology clinic provides services in subspecialty evaluations and care for children who have neurological disorders affecting the central nervous system, spinal cord, nerves and muscles.

The urology clinic offers comprehensive diagnostic and therapeutic services for children with diseases of the genitourinary tract.

King said pediatric and urology clinics are open once a month while the neurology clinic is open on Saturdays for easier convenience for families. The facility has three exam rooms and two “draw” rooms for blood.

“Having this center is Ironton is all about convenience,” King said when explaining the varieties of parental help Nationwide Children’s Hospital can offer families including eliminating long and time-consuming travel to the main Columbus hospital that previously was required.

The Close To Home Center is the hospital’s eighth center and second, along with Newark, outside of the greater Columbus area. The others include Dublin, East Central Columbus, East Columbus, Gahanna, Hilliard and Westerville.

This is not the hospital’s first entry into the Tri-State health care market.

Since 2007, the Heart Center at Nationwide Children’s Hospital has also provided outpatient pediatric cardiology services at Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital in Russell, Ky.

With more than 950 medical staff members and 6,000 employees, Nationwide Children’s Hospital has been ranked as one the best hospitals in the United States by both U.S. News & World Report and Child Magazine under the categories of both “Best Hospital” and “Emergency Services.

The hospital is also the pediatric teaching hospital for The Ohio State University School of Medicine.