HME Excellence Awards: PediStat thrives on smiles

by John Andrews

September 18, 2014

One of the company’s signature projects: PediSmiles, a partnership with other south Florida providers to entertain children in the hospital by dressing up as their favorite superheroes

MIAMI – PediStat serves a client base desperately in need of happiness: vulnerable children.

The mental, emotional and physical challenges these children endure on a daily basis would be formidable for adults. That is why the company, the second place winner in this year’s HME Excellence Awards, does everything in its power to bring smiles to their faces. PediStat’s website proclaims, “There is nothing as beautiful as a smiling child,” and that statement serves as a foundation for everything Grizzy Miller, RN, and her 12-member crew do for their pediatric population. Entering its 25th year, PediStat specializes in respiratory services for medically fragile children, including oxygen, ventilation, CPAP, pulse oximetry, tracheostomy and enteral nutrition. As a full-line supplier, the company also provides mobility equipment, aids to daily living and disposable supplies. Despite offering comprehensive products and services, Miller dispels the notion that her goal is for PediStat to grow beyond its current size. “We are a boutique, not a department store,” she says. Although it is insulated from Medicare headaches, PediStat must deal with Medicaid and the myriad regulatory and financial challenges of that program, including the rollout of a managed care program for Medicaid in Florida. Miller acknowledges that Medicaid is fraught with difficult nuances and red tape, but she says years of experience have taught her how to navigate around the obstacles. “We had a good year financially,” she says. “We don’t spend money excessively, but we don’t deny our patients anything, either. We are well established and some of our patients have been with us a long time. They grow up with us.” As part of its corporate culture, PediStat is actively involved in charity work and community-based activities, including hosting a camp for ventilator-assisted patients and donating equipment where it is needed. But its biggest project is PediSmiles, a partnership with other south Florida providers to entertain children in the hospital by dressing up as their favorite superheroes and taking them on fun field trips, such as to baseball games. “This is a major part of what we do,” Miller says. “The employees feel a great sense of loyalty to our patients because that is at the heart of our philosophy. It is unbelievably rewarding when your staff believes in what they are doing.”

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