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Lehigh Valley Health Network Opens New Children’s Health Center

By Colin McEvoy on August 11, 2022

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held Aug. 10 at the Michael & Christine Perrucci Center for Children’s Health and Wellbeing, as part of the health network’s Lehigh Valley Reilly Children’s Hospital. (photo courtesy LVHN)

A new health center established by the Lehigh Valley Health Network will use data and insights from community partners to improve the physical, mental and emotional health and well-being of children through community and population health interventions.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held on Aug. 10 for the new Michael & Christine Perrucci Center for Children’s Health and Wellbeing, as part of the health network’s Lehigh Valley Reilly Children’s Hospital.

“This is a monumental step towards creating a healthier community and proactively meeting the needs of children and their families,” says LVHN President & CEO Brian Nester. “We are so grateful to the Perruccis for their generous gift towards the development of this center, and we thank them for their incredible vision and generosity.”

The family of Michael & Christine Perrucci at the ribbon-cutting ceremony, (photo courtesy LVHN)

The center was established with support from Michael and Christine Perrucci. Michael is the owner of real estate development company Peron Construction, Inc., as well as co-founder and partner of the law firm Florio Perrucci Steinhardt Cappelli Tipton & Taylor.

“We are very fortunate in the Lehigh Valley to have developers and business leaders who are also committed to philanthropy and the support of community development and public health,” said Don Cunningham, President & CEO of the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation. “With their generous support, Mike and Christine Perrucci are adding to the Lehigh Valley’s wonderful health assets by strengthening the resources for children’s health.”

Located at LVHN-One City Center in downtown Allentown, the new center will build on Lehigh Valley Reilly Children’s Hospital’s ongoing work throughout the region to improve pediatric health outcomes, Nester said.

“Over the last 10 years, Lehigh Valley Reilly Children’s Hospital has worked tirelessly to partner with various community partners and provide health education and interventions for children of all ages,” said J. Nathan Hagstrom, Physician in Chief at Lehigh Valley Reilly Children’s Hospital.

“However, while we have been dedicated to improving various health outcomes and offering support to families across our community, we have not had a centralized hub of resources to coordinate our efforts, and there is much more work to be done,” Reilly said. “The Michael & Christine Perrucci Center for Children’s Health and Wellbeing will help us make a bigger impact.”

The center will employ a full team of public health experts who will measure the needs of the children in the local community and employ evidence-based practices to improve a wide range of health outcomes, including infant mortality and premature births, suicide attempts in adolescents, and resiliency in high-risk children.

Other health outcomes that will be improved by the center include adverse childhood experiences, child abuse and neglect, school readiness, school attendance in relation to health concerns, Emergency room and hospitalization rates for medically complex children, childhood obesity, immunization rates, and the impact of chronic illnesses and mental health issues.

“The center will also allow medical experts from the Children’s Hospital and community leaders to further collaborate on combating these health concerns and make measurable differences in our community,” Hagstrom says. “We are so excited for this next step in supporting the families in our region, and we are so thankful for the Perruccis and their partnership.”

During the ribbon-cutting, Michael Perrucci said: “Christine and I are honored to partner with Lehigh Valley Reilly Children’s Hospital on their mission to improve the health outcomes of children across our region. With children of our own, this cause is near to our hearts and allows us to contribute to not only our community’s present, but its future as well.”

LVHN has 13 hospital campuses, including four in Allentown, two in Bethlehem, and one in Easton, as well as 28 health centers, numerous primary and specialty care physician practices, and 20 ExpressCARE locations, including the area’s only Children’s ExpressCARE.

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