When it comes time for you to look for a medical day care you want the highest quality for your child. That’s not too much to ask, right? Then you begin researching, and suddenly overwhelm hits. Why is medical day care different from typical day care? How do I know which one will be the best fit for my child? How expensive is it going to be? Stop right there… take a deep breath. Knowing what to look for in a medical day care will ease your mind and make your decision an easier process.
At ChildrenFirst we know the overwhelm that can come when choosing the right medical day care. We also know what it means to a family when they discover the perfect fit for their child’s medical day care. We know medically fragile and medically complex infants and children require a unique style of care best suited for a medical day care. These children will spend a great deal of time there, making it imperative that it’s the right fit for them and their family. We highly suggest looking for a medical day care that provides clinical interventions, therapy services, and educational activities while showering the children with love and quality care. Having these will ensure each child is receiving the best care and stimulation while away from home.
Medical Day Care or Prescribed Pediatric Extended Care (PPEC) is for medically fragile and medically complex infants and children. They have specialists on their staff that meet the requirements for each child’s clinical interventions and therapy services. All of the children who attend require medical care, therefore, insurance typically pays for the cost of sending your child to a medical day care.
We are proud to say, in addition to clinical and therapy services, we also provide educational activities at ALL of our ChildrenFirst PPEC centers. Incorporating learning centers in each PPEC sets us aside from others who only offer the required services. It’s important to us that each child in our care reaches their full potential.
It’s imperative that you take the time to find the perfect fit for your child and your family. At ChildrenFirst in Central Florida, we know this can be a stressful process. So we put together a few of our best tips for choosing the right facility that fits you, your child, and your family’s needs.
PPEC is covered by Medicaid, Medicaid HMOs, CMS Network, and some commercial insurances. Once it’s been determined that a medical day care is the best option for your infant or child, the first call you should make is to your insurance. Knowing your coverage is valuable when determining what you qualify for. This will eliminate falling in love with a facility you might not have coverage for.
If you are still having trouble determining what your insurance covers, give the facility a call. Here at ChildrenFirst we have staff dedicated to making this part of the process less stressful for you! In fact, if you have insurance questions contact us now, we’d love to help!
Once you’ve received a list of covered facilities from your insurance, look them up! Search the company online and take a look at what pops up. Review their website, social accounts, google reviews, and other search results. During your research look into these things (we’ve link ours to check out now):
Doing your research before contacting a medical day care will save you time and energy. After looking at their reviews from past and current families you will quickly see the facility’s reputation. It’s equally important to find a facility that has everything you are looking for, and have a positive connection with on a personal level for your child.
When you’re looking for a PPEC with a solid reputation, head straight to the reviews. You’ll find reviews from both past and current parents sharing their experiences. You’ll also come across reviews from staff, these are just as important as parent reviews because you’ll be able to see how they feel about working at the facility.
Being that medical day cares are different from typical day cares there are fewer options. Finding one conveniently located to you may be difficult. ChildrenFirst has 6 PPEC facilities located throughout Central Florida. We also provide transportation to and from the facilities each day for your child.
Education is Essential
It is not required for PPECs to have learning centers within them. However, education is an essential part of child development. Growth and stimulation should be encouraged every day, and milestones celebrated! That’s why ChildrenFirst has incorporated a learning center at every PPEC. Our educators are passionate about all areas of child development: cognitive, emotional, language, physical, and social.
Some great educational aspects to look for in a program are:
Who’s on the Staff
Your child has unique needs that require caregivers to have specialized education and knowledge. The staff should include experienced RN’s, LPN’s, Physical Therapists (PT), Speech Therapists (ST or SLP) and Occupational Therapists (OT) and certified teachers. These types of experience are necessary at a medical day care because the children receive a wide range of physician-prescribed clinical interventions including: Apnea monitoring, oxygen administration, tracheostomy care, ventilator management, g-tube feedings, medication administration, nutritional management and formula administration. We know how critical it is that there are staff members able and available to meet all of your child’s needs while there.
We are excited to say ChildrenFirst has an incredibly loving, caring, passionate, and educated staff. Each of our staff members has a heart for children with medical needs. We celebrate ALL milestones for EACH child because we love to see each of them achieve their greatest potential!
Once you narrow down the medical day cares you are interested in, schedule an in-person visit. This will allow you to experience the environment firsthand. When scheduling your appointment, we encourage you to request to meet the team and/or director during your visit. Also, go in prepared, create a list of questions to ask.
Not sure what to ask, here’s our suggested list of questions to get you started:
We would love to meet you and your child and show you around a PPEC, contact us now to schedule your visit!
Your child is your most precious possession and their care is of the uttermost importance. Accreditations will ensure the facility you are looking at has met government-set health and safety standards. While each state has different requirements, you can see what your state’s licensing requirements are at the National Resource Center for Health and Safety in Child Care and Early Education or at Child Care Aware.
ChildrenFirst Health Care System’s accreditations include the Accreditation Commission for Health Care (ACHC) and is the only medical day care awarded with the National Associate for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).
Families with medically fragile or medically complex infants and children face challenges in everyday life. Sometimes these challenges require ongoing medical care and specialized programs. ChildrenFirst offers complete pediatric health care to encourage healthy living and growth for all of their patients. If your child ever requires additional services we can assist with:
ChildrenFirst is a safe and reputable option for your medically fragile child’s needs. We would love for you to schedule a visit today.