Linsey Grant, RN, is the current administrator for the Desoto Pediatric Extended Care Center, which recently observed its second anniversary at 750 Stateline Road East in Southaven.
Grant points out the center is a medical facility for medically-fragile children, not a daycare center for youngsters with special challenges.
“We are a medical facility because we are staffed by nurses and certified nursing or medical assistants,” Grant said. “All of our staff are licensed with pediatric experience so we are listed through the state as a medical facility.”
She adds that everything the center does for children, ages newborn to 21, is done under specific direction from the child’s doctor.
“We work off their physician's orders so whatever is ordered for the child for the day is what we do,” Grant said. “If the child has a special instructor through Early Intervention, they come here to see them as well.”
The Early Intervention Program is just one way a child, who may suffer from a wide range of conditions such as seizure disorders or cerebral palsy, may be referred to the center for treatment.
“Our children are referred through many different areas,” said Grant. “Physicians may refer them, parents may call to inquire if their children are eligible and we get them through the Early Intervention Program through the Department of Health or through DeSoto County Schools.”
The cost of services is paid for through the state and not from the parents, Grant noted.
“Our services are paid for through Medicaid and the child has to be approved through insurance. Medicaid or Mississippi can pay for our services so there’s no out-of-pocket costs to the parents,” said Grant.
The center, licensed at 32 children, attracts youngsters primarily from DeSoto County but can also come from a distance for its services.
“We did have one child from Michigan City, Mississippi, near Corinth,” Grant said. “We’ve also have had children from Tunica, so we’ve had some parents commute from quite a ways to bring their children here,” adding transportation is also available if needed.
Grant, a Hernando native who came to the center after working as an emergency room nurse at Baptist Memorial Hospital-DeSoto, said a difficult time for her oldest son inspired her move into this new career role.
“My oldest child was involved in an accident in 2012 and suffered a traumatic severe brain injury and we had to go through all of the in-patient rehab and re-learn how to do everything,” Grant said. “I was not able to send him to schools and get him into a daycare, so I really grew a heart for the parents of patients that have had to go through something similar, whether they were born with it or acquired it after birth through injuries or illnesses.”
Bob Bakken is Staff Writer and may be reached at 662-429-6397 ext. 240.