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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS FOR FAMILIES

When families are interested in learning more about New England Pediatric Care, they often ask many of the same questions. Hopefully, the following information is helpful to you. In addition, Social Service department and/or Administration would be happy to talk to you further about the services provided at NEPC.

  1. What do the children at New England Pediatric Care do each day?
  2. What is a particular school day like?
  3. What kind of therapies will my child receive and how often?
  4. When may I visit, and can other family members visit as well?
  5. Can my child come home for a visit?
  6. What will my child's room be like?
  7. How may I be involved in my child's care?
  8. How much individual attention will my child get?
  9. What happens if my child becomes ill?
  10. What happens on the day of admissions to the New England Pediatric Care?
  11. Do I have to give up custody of my child if he/she is admitted to New England Pediatric Care?
  12. Does admission to a skilled pediatric nursing facility mean there is no hope for my child?
  13. Will I have the opportunity to meet the families of the other children?
  14. If I want more information about New England Pediatric Care, or would like to take a tour what should I do?

1.) What do the children at New England Pediatric Care do each day?
A.) A typical day at NEPC is filled with many activities. It is our belief that the children benefit most from a consistent routine that includes many opportunities for stimulation and interaction with others. Daily schedules include bathing, grooming, dressing, and feeding, along with medication and nursing treatments. Daytime hours are filled with school, therapies, aquatics, and field trips, as well as medical appointments and specialty clinics. Late afternoons and evenings include our recreational program and other special activities. At various times of the year, particularly around the holidays, local community and civic groups visits NEPC and sponsor special events for our children. Our volunteer program also provides special attention such as reading, music, rocking and taking walks. Weekend time is less structured but includes recreational programs, time for visits and family activities.
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2.) What is a particular school day like?
A.) Children attend school from 9:00am to 2:30 pm. Monday through Friday all year round. During the school day, they participate in activities, which are designated to maximize each childs level of functioning. The activities are focused on sensory awareness, language and communication, activities of daily living, positioning, gross motor, and function skills. During the summer, our school is less structured. It includes outdoor activities as well as community experiences, such as trips to the beach or local parks, camping outing. Parents are welcomed to visit the classroom during the day or participate in community trips.
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3.) What kind of therapies will my child receive and how often?
A.) Children at NEPC have access to the full services of the Rehabilitation Department. Therapies offered include: Occupations, Physical, and speech Therapy as well as Therapeutic Recreation. In addition, we run an aquatics program, which utilizes the indoor heated pool. Direct services are provided on a one to one or small group basis. Indirect services are offered through consultation to the classroom or nursing personnel. The frequency and scope of services your child will receive will vary depending upon their individual needs.
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4 .) When may I visit, and can other family members visit as well?
A.) There are no restrictions on visiting at our facility. Visitors may include children, grandparents, other family members, clergy, etc. The best time to visit is between 3:00p.m. and 8:00p.m. on weekdays an 1:00p.m and 8:00 p.m. on weekends and holidays, although you are welcome to come at any time. While visiting, family members may take their child off the units for walks around the building or visit in the family rooms or other areas. During the nice weather, they can visit outside or go to our specially adapted playground. We do ask families to limit young childrens visits during the flu season, and for families and friends to limit visitation if not feeling well themselves.
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5.) Can my child come home for a visit?
A.) Home visits for either the day or overnight are allowed, although some restrictions apply. If you are planning a home visit, please contact a nursing or social work staff in advance. We will need to make arrangements for medications, equipment, etc, in order that you may continue your childs care while they are outside the facility.
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6.) What will my child's room be like?
A.) Two children share most rooms. We provide comforters for the bed, but families are welcome to bring quilts or bedspreads from home if they wish. Rooms may be personalized with toys, mobiles, pictures, etc, to make rooms comfortable and homelike. Each room is equipped with a bureau and a wardrobe for each child. If you desire, one additional bureau can be brought from home for more storage space.
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7.) How may I be involved in my childs care?
A.) Each family feels differently about how much they want to participate in their childs daily care. Some want to do a lot, while others feel comfortable having nursing care provide this care. If you want to be involved in your childs daily care, there is much you can do. Parents may bather, change or position their children. They can give haircuts or clip nails. They can do weekly laundering of clothes. Parents especially welcome to do lots of rocking, hugging, holding, singing, or reading aloud to their child. Many parents enjoy walking their child around the building or outside in warm weather. We understand that each family is different and will do our best to accommodate your wishes.
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8.) How much individual attention will my child get?
A.) Families who have cared for their child at home often wonder about this. Individual attention is provided to each child in a variety of ways throughout the course of every day. For example, care such as bathing, changing, dressing and feeding is all done on an individual basis. Children also receive individualized programming at various times during the school day. In addition, we utilize volunteers who spend special one to one time singing, reading, rocking, walking, or doing other activities your child particularly enjoys. We also design our staffing patterns such that the same staff members' as much as possible care for children. This allows them to know your child well, to be familiar with their habits, their likes and dislikes, and their special needs. Although we care for many children here, we strive to make it as personal and homelike as possible.
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9.) What happens if my child becomes ill?
A.) If your child is not feeling well, he or she will be seen by one of our attending pediatricians. Should this occur when a physician is not in the building, the will be consulted by telephone and if necessary will come in to see the child. Parents are called if the situation is felt serious and not just a case of the sniffles. Hospitalization is sometimes necessary in which case admission is arranged to the hospital of your choice. In the case of a medical emergency, your child will be sent immediately to the nearest local hospital for treatment.
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10.) What happens on the day of admissions to the New England Pediatric Care?
A.) The day of your child's admission can be busy, but it is designed to ensure a successful transition to our facility. On the day of arrival, your child will receive an extensive nursing assessment. Your child will also receive a physical examination by one of our attending physicians within the first 48 hours following admission. A full medical history will be gathered as well as details of your child's habits, likes, dislikes, and special needs. Family members are given a tour of the unit and introduced to the staff, particularly the primary nurse who will be caring for your child. An inventory will be taken of all the personal belongings you bring for your child. Procedures on the unit will be explained to you. Any questions you have will be answered. You may spend as much time as you like getting your child settled in their room, arranging their toys, etc. You are encouraged to visit as frequently as want or to have regular telephone contact with staff to reassure yourself that all is going well.
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11.) Do I have to give up custody of my child if he/she is admitted to New England Pediatric Care?
A.) No! Admission to NEPC does not affect your parental rights or guardianship status in any way. Our goal is to keep families together as much as possible during the time that your child is a resident here. As a parent/guardian, all major medical and educational decisions are subject to your approval just as when your child is living in your home.
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12.) Does admission to a skilled pediatric nursing facility mean there is no hope for my child?
A.) Absolutely not! Our facility prides itself on it philosophy of developing each child to his or her fullest potential. No matter what impairments a child may have, the staff constantly works towards building on a child's strengths to encourage the highest possible level of independent functioning.
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13.) Will I have the opportunity to meet the families of the other children?
A.) Yes. There are a number of ways you may meet other families. First, you may request to speak with one of them prior to your child's admission. These families can best tell you what it is like to have a child at our facility and provide emotional support and understanding at a time when you may be feeling confused, sad, or guilty. It is natural to feel this way when faced with the decision to have your child live away from home, even if only for a short time. Each of our families has faced a similar decision and you may find it helpful to speak with them. NEPC also offers a number of family activities to which parents, siblings, grandparents, etc. are invited. These have included a seasonal carnival, Halloween haunted house, a winter holiday fair and a spring road race. (The last two are fundraising events sponsored by NEPC, which you are invited to participate in any way you wish.)
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14.) If I want more information about New England Pediatric Care, or would like to take a tour what should I do?
A.) To learn more about our facility, call or come visit us. We are happy to have you tour our facility and speak to our staff. Appointments can be arranged by calling (978)667-5123
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