child therapy

PROGRESS — Developmental Therapist Marissa Wells works with a child on goals during pandemic.

One of my hats at Bona Vista Programs is overseeing the pediatric therapies program – Positive Results for Kids.

I adore this program for so many reasons. When I started at Bona Vista 13 years ago, I was hired in as the medical marketing representative for the therapies program. I was responsible for generating doctor referrals, creating marketing pieces for distribution, and coming up with creative ways to stand out from the competition. I dove into this program with my whole heart, learning what each therapy did and how it helped someone.

I wanted to know how we generated these “positive results” and why people in need would choose us. That is what you do when you are in marketing and public relations; you learn every facet of your product/program so you can put yourself in the consumers’ shoes.

What I learned first and foremost is that we are mission-driven. It says right there in our mission that “we build the foundation of success.” The therapists can see your child at Positive Results as early as you see a worry. Early intervention in therapies (and in education – but that is another article; do not worry) is so important to future development and helps build that “foundation.”

The earlier you get started the better, and our therapists are specialized in pediatrics. They have seen countless diagnoses in children, and they are trained to handle the simplest to the most severe and profound disabilities. Rest assured; you are in good hands.

I also learned that we do not just provide the therapies to the child and send them on their way hoping they get better with just our treatment. We provide wraparound care with the physician and with the family. We encourage family engagement because we want the family to work with the child at home. We cannot be reliant on just the one-hour therapy session(s) during the week to help children progress. As you know, it takes a village with children, and we are just one party in that village. We support, educate, and encourage as your therapy team.

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So, where do these Positive Results come from? When you see a child walk for the first time. When you see them trying new foods you never thought they would try. When they can write for the first time. When you see the child processing thoughts and feelings differently. When the child gets stronger and more independent. Those are the Positive Results, and those are the moments that keep our mission alive and our therapists motivated.

I decided to write on this program today because I have been asked several times if we are still seeing patients amid the pandemic. We absolutely are now! We did shift to teletherapy services to keep everyone safe, and we always have that option during COVID-19. Teletherapy or in-person, we are happy to have you join the Bona Vista therapy family. With that being said, we have many safety protocols in place to keep you and the staff healthy.

And if you are not ready to see us in person regularly, that is OK! After the initial evaluation, we can most certainly do those virtual visits as long as insurance allows. That is the beauty of technology; it adapted during the pandemic quickly and allowed us to continue seeing children already enrolled in our services.

Just a quick reminder of our therapy services: we provide outpatient and First Steps therapies. For outpatient, we offer physical and occupational therapies for ages birth to 18 years of age. We are also a First Steps agency that provides physical, occupational, speech and developmental therapies for those children birth to 3 years of age, and we provide those therapies in their natural environment. What does that mean? We can come to your home, childcare, park – anywhere that your child feels the most at ease – to provide therapy services. How convenient is that?

We are hopeful to start back up our United Way and We Care Developmental Screenings in the fall (if it is safe to host, of course). They may look a little different to ensure safety – and maybe even be hosted outside! These screenings are free, and you can meet with a therapist for up to an hour to discuss your child’s developmental concerns.

I would love for you to call us if you have any questions about our services, your child, or how we can help you. Troy Bowers, our community education coordinator, is giving virtual tours of our program if you would like to talk to someone and see our space. Brooklyn Dugdale is our intake coordinator, and she handles scheduling and insurance (and so much more!). She would be happy to talk to you about any of your questions, comments, or concerns. Please give us a call at 765-454-5340, email Brooklyn at bdugdale@bonavista.org or visit us online at bonavista.org.