News and Notes

  • Patient Quality Care Measures: January and February 2017

    Blackstone Valley Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine is pleased to announce that for the months of January and February 2017, our practice received High Scores for Patient Quality Care Measures.

    • 100% of our patients were screened for Tobacco Use
    • 100% of our patients age 13 had Adolescent Immunization Combo 1
    • 99% of our patients had a weight assessment & counseling for nutrition and physical activity
    • 100% of our patients received preventive visit reminders
    • 100% of our patients age 2 thru 17 had a blood pressure screening
  • To all Neighborhood Health Plan Medicaid Patients

    We are sorry to announce that as of January 1, 2017 Blackstone Valley Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine will no longer accept Neighborhood Health Plan Medicaid. We continue to accept only newborns with Neighborhood until their insurance is changed.

    We sincerely wish to continue to follow and to care for your children. If you desire to remain with Blackstone Valley Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine we request that you change over your health insurance plan to United HealthCare Medicaid. You can request this change immediately under one of the following conditions:

    1. Change within the first 90 days after having a new baby
    2. Change at annual Medicaid benefits review
    3. Change because your child’s primary pediatrician no longer accepts your insurance

    Change can be requested by calling Neighborhood-RI customer service at 844-602-3469 and ask to be switched over to United HealthCare Medicaid. A Neighborhood ID or a Social Security number is necessary to initiate the switch for each family member. Or, for your convenience, please download this necessary form to switch from Neighborhood Health Plan of RI to United HealthCare Medicaid. Please complete and sign and mail it to:

    Neighborhood Health Plan of RI
    910 Douglas Pike
    Smithfield, RI  02917

    Please make sure to use registered mail. If it is more convenient, we would be happy to mail completed forms from our Cumberland office. Our staff is available to help you with any questions or concerns and processing the change form. Please let us know if you experience difficulty from Neighborhood Health Plan of RI regarding your right to change and please let us know when the switch has been requested.

    We apologize for any inconvenience created by dropping Neighborhood Health Plan Medicaid. We appreciate your efforts to switch coverage to United HealthCare Medicaid to remain as patients of Blackstone Valley Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine.

     

  • School and Daycare Health: Cold Season

    The opening of school with crowded buses, classrooms, and halls provides the perfect opportunity for the spread of viruses from one child to the next. There are ways to reduce a child’s chance of contracting the latest “bug” floating around the school and daycare environment with a few simple instructions.

    1. Teach your child to wash their hands before eating and after using the bathroom.
    2. Teach your child to cover their mouths and noses when they sneeze or cough, preferable in the crooks of their elbows if possible instead of their hands.
    3. Warn your child to never share cups or straws with other children
    4. Make sure your child washes his/her hands and faces when they get home from school.
    5. Review age appropriate personal hygiene with your child.
    6. Make sure your child gets plenty of sleep because lack of sleep reduces the ability of the immune system to fight infection.
    7. Children learn by example so set a good personal hygiene example.
  • Sports Season

    Sports season is an exciting time for children and their families.  It is a time of competition, good sportsmanship and trials of physical endurance and ability.  It is important to remind all sports participants to wear appropriate safety equipment to minimize the chance of injury.  Parents need to initiate a conversation with their child about the seriousness of injuries.  Children must be honest about sprains, falls and other injuries because further trauma on an existing injury can cause long-lasting or even permanent damage.  Rest and recovery is an important part of an athlete’s life as it ensures that the athlete returns to top form and performs to his/her potential without further risk of injury as well as remaining a full contributing member of his/her team.

    All head injuries should be evaluated by a doctor as soon as possible for the possibility of a concussion.  A child who experiences any loss of consciousness or exhibits severe symptoms of vomiting, fainting, vision changes or altered mental status, please call 911 and seek immediate medical attention for your child at a hospital emergency room.

    Any sport can be physically demanding on a young body.  It is especially important for children who participate in sports to have annual physicals to determine if they are physically fit and healthy for sports as well as to discuss any concerns regarding their health.  Chronic aches and pains need to be discussed with the pediatrician because repetitive movements can worsen and stress parts of the body creating a situation susceptible to injury.

    Make sure your child has their annual physical prior to the start of the sports season.  We recommend calling three months or more before the physical is needed to have your choice of time that is convenient for your schedule.

  • Fall Allergies

    Any seasonal change includes weather pattern shifts and different foliage which introduces different allergens (unseen) into the atmosphere.  Every season change initiates a time to think about seasonal allergies, to prepare for allergies and to monitor children for symptoms.

    If your child has a known history of seasonal allergies or has tested positive for environmental allergies, it is important to start allergy medications at the start or right before the change in season.  These medications include over-the-counter long antihistamines like Claritin and Zyrtec, prescriptions steroidal nasal sprays like Flonase and Nasocort, and oral immune modulators like Monteleukast (aka Singulair).   Often, getting a jump on allergies before the flare up maximizes the comfort of children and helps to prevent suffering from the more severe effects of allergies such as chronic congestion, sinus infections and asthma attacks.

    Parents of children with asthma must recognize the importance of keeping allergy symptoms under control because severe allergy symptoms can cause asthma flare ups which can progress and become life threatening.  Allergy medications must be started and taken daily as well as maintenance medications if a child has been prescribed one.  Remember, waiting to respond to asthma symptoms is dangerous as asthma attacks can escalate very quickly and good prevention is the key for avoiding serious consequences for children with asthma.

    Any parent who suspects their child is developing seasonal allergies should observe their child to determine if he/she is comfortable and acting healthy.  If symptoms progress and the child is uncomfortable, call the pediatrician to discuss managing mild symptoms or make an appointment to have the child evaluated and to initiate maintenance medications if needed.