Over three generations of families are a part of the Jacksonville Pediatrics practice. It’s no wonder that moms and dads, and even grandparents, return to our pediatric practice with their children and grandchildren; it’s a family tradition. Established in 1948 by Dr. James Lanier, the fundamental values: love of children and staying abreast of the latest medical advancements and technologies, remain firmly entrenched.
New Jacksonville Pediatrics members are carefully screened for their professional credentials, certifications and their outstanding academic achievements. As a closely knit group, we think of ourselves as a second family, we want professionals who share our ideals: excellent listeners, a parent’s advocate, the ability to befriend children and gain their confidence, and a person who brings to our office unbridled enthusiasm, energy, and a love of their chosen profession.
I’ve been described as a big kid, that’s probably why our patients feel so relaxed and comfortable when they have to come in. Teaching families about their conditions and treatments, I use models, drawings, charts, and hand outs. I am able to reassure mothers who are struggling with breast feeding or who have a child who isn’t walking or talking on time. I take how ever long I need to thoroughly understand how a child is feeling, search for the causes, and always spend time answering every patient and parent question.
My two children have provided invaluable lessons regarding the art and practice of pediatrics. I have gained respect for the challenges parents face in such things as getting young children to take their medicine, eat their veggies, handling them when ill and facing developmental concerns.
Often the most powerful reason parents give for deciding on a particular vaccine or treatment plan is because I tell them it’s what I’ve done for my own children. I never have, nor will I, ever offer any procedure, vaccine, or therapy that I would not offer my own kids. I think of all my patients as my kids.
In 1986 the chairman of my residency program recommended me to join this busy and popular practice which has been treating Florida and Georgia families since 1948. It thrills and humbles me to watch my patients grow up in this practice and then start bringing in their own children.
34. That’s the number of kids in my family: my grandparents (19), my parents (10), and my wife and I have five. I’ve experienced a lot and heard many stories, all of which is helpful in my work with patients and their parents. There is an excellent chance that I’ve experienced what they are going through, particularly with behavioral approaches and training techniques.
Working with kids and helping them grow up healthy and strong makes me happy. I’ve been privileged over the years as a volunteer at an orphanage in Jamaica and as a coach for my children’s teams. When a child smiles because I’ve helped them feel better or learn a new skill it makes me feel great.
Now, after almost 25 years with Jacksonville Pediatrics, I have decided to reduce my hours to several days a month. I want to continue serving my patients while also pursuing other charitable endeavors that are dear to me. My wife, Julia, and I are thrilled to have more time to indulge our three grandchildren.
I take my daughter to work everyday. Not literally of course, but my mom experience helps broaden my perspective about children, making me more realistic and empathetic, especially when it comes to their emotional development and behavior.
Not every ill is cured with a prescription. Children often come see me not feeling well because they are stressed out and physical symptoms present themselves. It is no wonder they are stressed. Today kids are the busiest, most scheduled of any generation. They feel the stress of living up to the expectations of their parents, their teachers, their coaches, and, most importantly, themselves. Sometimes all this adds up to headaches, stomach aches, or just some indescribably feeling of the blahs.
Eliminating a child’s stress is important. Kids have such a great perspective on life. When we give patients the time to relax they can express their thoughts and worries and the parents have time to share their concerns. When I observe both my patient and their parent start to relax, I know they will work together, finding ways to take the stress out of everyday and get back to enjoying life. For me, that’s a great day at the office.
I worked as a medical assistant at Jacksonville Pediatrics before medical school and found the doctors to be a great bunch of caring physicians and I knew then I wanted to be a part of this practice. I’m so glad I’m here.
My only niece was six months old and suffering from heart failure. She was in dire need of a life saving heart transplant. Suddenly I was on the other side of a stethoscope, feeling like her parents, frightened bystanders. Thankfully, today my niece is a healthy and happy little girl.
This transformed me as a medical student. I channeled a new and heightened sense of empathy into my patient’s care along with my love of medical science. I became a better patient advocate.
For me, pediatrics was a natural choice. I get to work with kids all day. I think the best job in the world is one that makes a lasting improvement in the lives of children. It’s important to me that parents share their instincts about their children, so we’re partners on their kids health care team.
Kids appreciate that I take time to ask them questions. I listen to what they tell me – and to what they don’t. Both can have an impact on their physical and emotional health. Sometimes they need a hug after a vaccination or encouragement when they’re struggling in school.
Some of the nurses at the children’s hospital have told me, “I felt so comfortable with my patients in your hands – now I’m pregnant and I want you to be their pediatrician.” I can’t think of a higher compliment. And I’ll be right here for them, and their child, until we all wave them off to college.
My wife Adriana and I are beyond thrilled about becoming first time parents later this year. Becoming a dad is another transformative experience that I know will help me be an even better pediatrician.
Florida State University
B.S. in Exercise Science
Nova Southeastern University, D.O.
Pediatric Residency University of Florida, Jacksonville
I love being a part of Jacksonville Pediatrics. My goal is to really listen to parents and patients and take the time necessary to understand them and communicate well. More than two decades of practice has made me more intuitive, patient, compassionate, and a better doctor.
As a Christian, my goal is to approach patients and families as a “whole” because social and spiritual issues directly impact our health and lives. Daily, I pray that God will use me to positively inﬂuence the lives of the children, teens, and families that honor me with their trust. It is a joy for me to serve my patients and their families in the best way possible, whether we need to carve out extra time to deal with a complex problem or ﬁnd time for a quick visit or answer a parent’s phone call.
Whether it is preventing disease by immunizing, treating illness, or enabling a patient to do better in school, improving a child’s quality of life is the most rewarding part of our pediatric practice.
Keep Calm and Carry On*. As a neonatal ICU nurse at Baptist Hospital the care of critically ill newborns was a daily emergency. This intensive, and often exhausting, experience of caring for the tiniest babies, with life threatening medical problems, was one of the most rewarding positions I’ve ever had.
Along with my academic training, my ICU experience has proved to be an incredible foundation for my two favorite jobs: being a mom and working as a Nurse Practitioner at Jacksonville Pediatrics.
When our patients call the office with a sudden illness or medical situation, such as fevers, rashes, sore throats that could be strep throat, or any one of the bugs children pick up at school, our parents know that they can call or bring in their child immediately and I can help both the patient and their parents relax which is one of the first steps to feeling better.
I love being a mom, it’s something new almost everyday. Being involved with my children’s activities at school, church and scouting has also expanded my first hand understanding of how children develop differently, physically and behaviorally. This, of course, has been very beneficial as I work to help my patients and their parents learn about dealing with different situations or helping them understand the value of developing healthy living habits.
When the days are busy and rushed, and really, that’s every day, I just say to myself, stay calm and carry on!
*A favorite phrase taken from an English WWII poster.