HOULTON – Just in time for flu season, sick children in southern Aroostook County will soon be able to seek specialized treatment for their fever and sniffles in a new facility focused specifically on treating patients in their age group.
Ann Joy, community relations director for Houlton Regional Hospital, said recently that officials are planning to christen the newly constructed pediatric office suite on Dec. 10. A ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held at 9 a.m.
The facility is located under the hospital’s Center for Community Health Education. The suite will house two pediatricians and a family nurse practitioner and is much more spacious than the office the physicians now have.
Creation of the new pediatric office suite has been a long process for the hospital’s health services foundation. The group’s board of trustees launched an ambitious fund-raising campaign for the new facility estimated to cost around $275,000.
By the time blueprints for the new suite were unveiled in June, the group had already raised more than $100,000 toward the effort. An anonymous gift added even more money to the total, and several fund-raisers boosted that amount even higher.
Tom Moakler, the hospital’s chief executive officer, deemed the creation of the new suite “essential” to providing expanded services to area children.
Until now, the hospital’s two pediatricians have been forced to work in cramped office space without the capability of separating sick and healthy children.
The new suite will accomplish that, greatly reducing the spread of germs by having two separate waiting rooms so that healthy children do not have to come into contact with their ailing peers.