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Takoma Regional invites community to view students' artful additions to dedicated pediatric area
GREENEVILLE – Takoma Regional Hospital will hold a ribbon-cutting ceremony and open house to unveil its newly decorated pediatric area and the winners of the “Hospital and Healthcare Heroes” children’s art contest on Monday, July 14.

The open house will be held from 6 to 7:30 p.m. in the pediatric area, located on the third floor at Takoma Regional. The public is invited to view the art exhibit and winning entries and enjoy children’s entertainment. Refreshments will be served.

The 29 winning art entries have been framed in colorful mattes and brighten up the area, which was designed for the comfort and security of children and parents.

“We were overwhelmed with the response from the contest and look forward to our open house where we can show the community the extraordinary talent of students in Greeneville and Greene County,” said Marnie Knight, director of medical/surgical care and pediatrics at Takoma Regional.

The hospital received nearly 400 entries for the contest and a panel of judges from the Greeneville Arts Council selected three winners from each school grade category, kindergarten through eighth grade, and also awarded two honorable mentions.

Last fall, Takoma Regional dedicated a nursing area for inpatient pediatric care. The area is completely secure and visitors must press a security button to be admitted by the nursing staff. Cameras are strategically placed so nurses can identify parents and visitors.

“For a child dealing with accident or illness, comfort is always important, not only for the child but also for the parents or caregivers who stay by their child’s side during their entire stay,” Knight said. “We’ve worked hard to create a pediatric area that is more like home.”

All nine pediatrics rooms are private and have their own refrigerator, oversized sleeper chairs for parents and a PlayStation 2.

“Having a sick child is a stressful time for a family, and children are often scared going into an unfamiliar environment,” said Dr. Stephen Perry, a pediatrician who is Takoma Regional’s medical director of pediatrics. “Takoma Regional has taken steps to make the experience as friendly and comfortable as possible.”

Dr. Perry is also impressed by the level of experience of the all-registered nursing staff on the floor.

“Takoma has increased its commitment to pediatric care and has dedicated nurses for the pediatric area so my patients will have familiar faces day and night,” Dr. Perry said. “That can make a difference for a child recovering from an illness.”