40°F
weather icon Clear

Pediatrician joins local health care practice

For the past 25 years, parents residing in Boulder City have had to drive out of town in order for their child to receive pediatric care. That did not sit well with Pam McLean, practice manager for the HealthCare Partners Medical Group.

Despite her relentless pursuit to bring in a certified pediatrician to Boulder City, she kept getting shut down. At long last, after years of trying, McLean finally got the green light two months ago to bring in the town’s saving grace, Dr. Karen Swarts.

“I don’t know how many kids live here, but I don’t know why they haven’t had any pediatrics,” said a baffled McLean. “The stars aligned and we were able to do it this go around. To be able to provide that to the community is awesome.”

Swarts, a graduate from Ohio State University, has begun practicing out of the Nevada Highway Clinic from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays and Tuesdays.

Swarts agrees it takes a special type of personality to be a pediatrician. Not only does she have to remain kindhearted to the kids, but she also has to know when to be the bearer of bad news to the parents.

“The worst part is having to tell a parent ‘Hey, I think your child has this little thing, but I have to rule out this big thing first.’ I hate having to freak parents out like that,” said a more serious Swarts.

Monday Swarts took care of her first patient in Boulder City. Joe and Cris Stubitz brought in their newborn daughter Chloe, who was the first baby born in 2016 at Summerlin Hospital Medical Center.

For Swarts, the joy of being able to help a child and put a smile on his or her face is the best part of the job, so much so that her enthusiasm has permeated throughout the office already and into her staff.

“I knew I wanted to be a doctor. I had no idea I wanted to be a pediatrician,” Swarts said. “So I talked to my husband and told him I really like pediatrics. He realized I was the happiest then, so I said to myself ‘Ok, let’s go that route!’ I just never thought I would.”

Although this week is officially the first week that Swarts’ office has been open, there have not been many parents rushing their kids to her office just yet. It is a process, according to McLean.

Many kids in Boulder City have been seeing a pediatrician in Las Vegas for years. Once the word gets out that Boulder City has its own pediatrician, it is only a matter of time before parents begin to bring in their children, she said.

“I think once they know we’re here and what we’re about, I think the transition should happen fairly quickly. I think this is very vital to the community that they do not have to travel to Henderson,” McLean said.

Letting Boulder City know that Swarts is not temporary and that she will be a permanent fixture in Boulder City is key, she said.

Plans are in place to redo the marquee in front of the Nevada Highway Clinic so that people driving by can see pediatrics in Boulder City is here to stay, McLean added.

“The best thing you can do is love your job, and I love my job. It is nice knowing that you are in a community that is happy to have you,” Swarts said with a wide smile on her face. “I’m happy to see the kids and the parents in the office. Hopefully, they’re well when I do.”

To make an appointment to see Swarts, call 702-562-8900 or visit the Nevada Highway Clinic at 1297 Nevada Highway, Suite B.

Contact reporter Juan Diego Pergentili at jpergentili@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9401. Follow him on Twitter @jdpbcreview.

 

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
THE LATEST
Revenue added to pool fund

Despite a dissenting vote from the mayor, Boulder City’s fund for a new pool is $3.1 million richer because of extra revenue received during the 2021 fiscal year.

Train museum expansion on track

The expansion of the Nevada State Railroad Museum in Boulder City is moving forward and funds to finish its design phase could be released in February.

Parcels earmarked for development

The city’s land management process is two properties larger after council approved adding them at its meeting Tuesday.

Business Beat: Family nudges jeweler into career

When he was a young boy growing up in Cleveland, Paul Kramar never imagined that his desire to play with his uncle’s “big boy toys” would lead to a career as a master jeweler. But that’s exactly what it did.

Plan for pandemic-caused grocery shortages

Maybe your grocery store shelves are fully stocked and you have access to fresh fruit and produce in your area, but if you live in or around Boulder City, the stark reality is that grocery shoppers in the area are feeling the ongoing effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Gone are the vast quantities of brand choices on the shelves, and access to fresh produce and fruit is severely limited.

Forecast projects 30-plus-foot drop in 2 years at Lake Mead

Lake Mead’s water level is projected to drop more than 30 feet in the next two years, and the Southern Nevada Water Authority is urging people to continue conserving water.

Transportation issues forces changes to school hours

Several schools in Boulder City will be affected by the district’s recent decision to change the start and end times at some campuses in order to improve transportation.

Process to report mask mandate violations established

Nevada’s mask mandate is still in effect, and the state’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration office has created a way for people to report alleged violations.

District implements 5-day pause

The Clark County School District is implementing a five-day pause for all classes and school activities due to extreme staffing issues because of the high number of positive COVID-19 cases.