Health Tool - Child Wellness Visit

I’m wondering if our local families understand and take advantage of the benefits of well-child checks. Well child checks are important tools for you and your doctor to make sure your child is developing right and to screen for common problems that appear at specific ages.

What happens at a well-child visit?  We check your child’s growth and development, looking at their height, weight, and head size as compared to other kids their age and gender.  This can tell us if there are trends that need attention.  We also check age-appropriate milestones, social behaviors and learning.  We make sure your baby is able to do the things he/she should be doing by certain ages.  If we find a problem, we make recommendations:  continue to monitor, send to a specialist to evaluate, or get specialized services or therapy starting at an age young enough to make a difference.  We also talk about nutrition and safety in the home and community.  At well child checks, we discuss immunizations to prevent illness.  At the Perry Memorial Walnut Clinic and our other Perry Clinics, we offer immunizations for children whose insurance cover them.  If your insurance doesn’t cover immunizations, we discuss with you when and which vaccines your child needs to get at the health department – who typically can provide these necessary immunizations for free or at a reduced cost to children without insurance or who are underinsured.

Most insurances cover wellness exams 100%, especially for kids.  Check with your insurance provider to be sure.  Well-child checks are for healthy kids who are growing and seldom go to the doctor, as well as for children who are seeing doctors regularly due to chronic health issues.

In my office, I like to see kids at the following intervals starting from their newborn checkup (2-5 days old), 1 month, 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, 9 months, and 12 months.  Then in the second and year, we would see them at 15 months and then every 6 months (18 months,  24 and 30 months of age) until they are 3.  Starting at age 3, we would then like to see the kids yearly until they are 21.  Their birth month is a good time to remember to schedule these visits, or you could do it in the summer when the children are off school.
 In the summertime (or any time of the year) we can incorporate school and sports physicals with the well-child check.  Keep in mind the well child visit and physical are not interchangeable.  The well-child check is much more comprehensive than the school or sports exams and is intended to catch any health problems early on.  Because of the wide range covered during the exam we can fill out the any required forms pertaining to the physical during this visit to save you time or an additional appointment.
Before you bring your child to the clinic for his/her wellness exam, make a list of topics you want to discuss with us, whether it be about how much sleep your baby should be getting, is a certain behavior normal, what and how much should they be eating, or maybe small health issues like skin lesions that you’ve deemed too minor to make an appointment for.

Regular wellness exams help your provider get to know your child and the family, so that they can know when something is amiss.  This consistency helps develop that medical home, where everyone knows your name.
Remember as you are making plans this summer, think about scheduling well child exams for your kids if they haven’t had one, need to get caught up on them, and especially if they need to get vaccines, or need physicals for camp,  school or sports.


City of Princeton Affirms Consideration of Partnership Options

August 6, 2019

The City of Princeton voted at its August 5, 2019 meeting in favor of Perry Memorial Hospital formally beginning a process to consider a variety of partnership options with OSF HealthCare.  Perry Memorial Hospital has been an independent affiliate of OSF HealthCare since 2007, and the two parties now have a Memorandum of Understanding, allowing for the Princeton hospital to have exclusive discussions with the Peoria-based system.

“We are pleased with the decision by the City Council to allow us to enter into exclusive conversations with our longtime affiliate,” said Bob Sehring, CEO, OSF HealthCare.  “Together, we have cared for residents of Bureau, Marshall and Putnam Counties for many years, and look forward to considering ways in which we may further our partnership with Perry Memorial to ensure residents’ health care needs continue to be met.”

“The support of the City of Princeton affirms our belief that OSF HealthCare is in the best position to partner with us to ensure health care for our community into the future,” said Annette Schnabel, DPT, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of Perry Memorial Hospital.  “OSF HealthCare is a leader in transforming health care and innovation, and we are excited to look at options that will ensure sustained quality, coordinated care and innovation moving forward.”

The August 5 City of Princeton vote was unanimous and the second part of a two-step process which would allow the two parties to enter into exclusive talks.  Previously, the Perry Memorial Hospital Board voted in favor of exploring partnership options.

“The City recognizes that health care is transforming with significant advancements in technology beyond what we have seen in the past,” said Joel Quiram, Princeton Mayor.  "The ability to participate in this innovation is an important point of consideration for our conversations going forward.  We believe we are being proactive in looking at the future now.  We recognize that certain components of health care come with the personal touch, and we are determined to deliver that aspect of care to our community for decades to come.”

The initial phase of information gathering, sharing, and planning could take up to one year. Additional information will be released when it becomes available.  


Contact: Shelli Dankoff, OSF HealthCare Media Relations Program Manager (309) 634-8583

                Cathy Foes, Perry Memorial Hospital Director of Marketing (815) 876-4481


About Perry Memorial Hospital:

Perry Memorial Hospital is a municipally-owned hospital located in Bureau County that dates back to 1903.  The 25-bed critical access facility is one of Bureau County’s largest employers with a workforce of over 370 people.


About OSF HealthCare:

OSF HealthCare is an integrated health system owned and operated by The Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis, headquartered in Peoria, Illinois.  OSF HealthCare employs nearly 21,000 Mission Partners (employees) in 126 locations, including 13 hospitals – nine acute care, four critical access – and two colleges of nursing.  Its physician network employs more than 1,200 primary care, specialist physicians, and advanced practice providers.