Pediatric nurse opens new walk-in clinic
A mainland pediatric nurse practitioner who prefers a one-hour boat ride to driving in traffic has opened AML Children's Medical Associates, a private pediatric clinic on the second floor of the Educomp building on State Road in Vineyard Haven.
Nurse Aileen Loranger of Acushnet said she wants to provide another option for residents and visitors in need of medical services for children. She said the Island's two pediatricians have limited urgent care hours, and a long wait in the emergency room is often the only other treatment option.
The idea to open a clinic on the Vineyard came from a colleague who started a similar pediatric clinic on Nantucket about six years ago. "She gave me the idea to build a similar practice on Martha's Vineyard where the population is larger and the health care shortage more of a concern," Ms. Loranger said. "I wanted to give year-round residents as well as seasonal visitors another option for pediatric health care."
Pediatric nurse Aileen Loranger. Photo by Susan Safford
Ms. Loranger earned an undergraduate degree at the University of Scranton in Pennsylvania and has a Master's of Science in Nursing degree from Massachusetts General Hospital Institute of Health Professions.
She said her pediatric nursing career began while attending graduate school when she worked on the organ transplant unit at Boston Children's Hospital. Her professional experience includes primary care practices in Boston and New York City.
She said she would be a primary care practitioner specializing in the care of infants, children and adolescents. Services will include the diagnosis and treatment of illness and injury; conducting history and physical examinations, ordering and interpreting diagnostic tests, administering vaccinations, writing prescriptions and providing health care counseling and education.
She does not accept insurance, but will charge a fee for services. Patients will need to seek insurance reimbursement.
Ms. Loranger said that the reaction from islanders she has talked to during her frequent visits has been very positive. However, the reaction by some Island physicians has been less than enthusiastic. "I am here for the people who want me," she said.
She plans to begin introducing herself around the Island and meeting other members of the Island's health-care community once she is set up.
Ms. Loranger said she decided to start a practice on the Vineyard because she likes the slower pace when compared to the mainland, which has become somewhat saturated - and there seemed to be a need.
Ms. Loranger said the commute from New Bedford by fast ferry beats "sitting in a car in traffic for an hour."
The clinic is open Monday through Friday and Saturday morning. Ms. Loranger is also available by telephone 7 am to 7 pm seven days a week.
For more information, call 508-693-4033.