When it comes to taking care of medically fragile children, Fred Schultz, founder and CEO of the Foundation for Positively Kids, said some families might be equipped to have one parent stay home with a child. But most of the time , that isn’t the case .
“Most cases you have both parents working or you have single parents with a medically fragile child,” Schultz said. “There is no place a child can go to receive continual care if they need a feeding tube or a ventilator if they can’t breathe on their own.”
Positively Kids helps carry that burden by offering services and care for children.
Schultz said about 35,000 children are born in Clark County each year, 13 percent of whom are medically fragile.
With a staff of 45 full-time employees and about 65 contracted speech, physical and occupational therapists, Positively Kids is able to send staff members to families’ homes.
“We are assisting about 300 kids,” Schultz said.
But Schultz wants to expand by opening a facility that would address medical needs in one location, something not available in Nevada, he said .
When completed, the center is expected to have an 84-bed facility equipped to handle the 24-hour needs of the children.
The facility also is expected to have a place called “sib-shop” that helps the healthy siblings of the children who are at the facility .
“Sometimes when you have a sick child, the well child gets neglected,” Schultz said.
This center is designed to help children with school work to make sure they don’t fall behind.
The land is behind the Perini Corp. , 2955 N. Green Valley Parkway, which also owns the property.
Schultz said Perini worked out a deal to help the foundation purchase the land.
The project is estimated at $40 million, said Terry Winnick, the project manager and a volunteer with the foundation.
Winnick said the project could break ground by January 2012.
“It could be as late as March,” Winnick said. “But it will be in the first quarter of 2012.”
Construction is expected to take between 12 and 18 months.
“We should be open and running by early 2014,” Winnick said. “In the end, this has been about five years in the making. This has been a very carefully planned project.”
Schultz said the location is perfect.
“It is centrally located, which is important,” Schultz said.
Winnick added that the location is easily accessible to main roads such as Green Valley Parkway and Sunset Road and is not far from U.S. Highway 95.
Schultz said the development should yield about 1,100 construction jobs.
“Those jobs will be beneficial to the city of Henderson,” Schultz said.
When the facility opens, Schultz expects to create about 150 new jobs ranging from nurses and medical staff to janitorial and food services.
After this project, the foundation is discussing a potential satellite campus in Clark County and possibly opening a facility in Northern Nevada.
“There is always a greater vision,” Schultz said. “But we are focused on this project right now.”
To find out more or to donate, visit positivelykids.org.
Contact Henderson/Anthem View reporter Michael Lyle at firstname.lastname@example.org or 387-5201.