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FMH Starts a Multidisciplinary Pediatric Feeding Program

Fairfield Memorial Hospital offers many specialized therapy services to help patients achieve their maximum potential and return to a healthy lifestyle. 

FMH recently started up a Multidisciplinary Pediatric Feeding Program to assist children with feeding difficulties.  Parents may not be aware that there is help available for their children requiring feeding therapy close to home. There are children that require feeding therapy that are currently driving more than 2 hours away to receive the help they need, but aren’t gaining full advantage due to the hassle of the distance. Regardless the reason, it’s become evident that there is a population of children in our area that need our help to obtain services for feeding difficulties and we are here to meet your families’ needs.

The Multidisciplinary Pediatric Feeding Program Team consists of therapists from Speech Therapy, Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy and a Registered Dietician.  Together this team will look at the child’s feeding development and difficulties as a whole. From this point the team will work toward a common goal: to improve feeding experiences for your child.  Some of the signs that your child may need feeding therapy is that your child is eating less than 20 foods total, refusing a whole texture group, severe weakness and ASD genetic disorders.  Some other red flags include difficulty forming latch for breast/bottle feeding, frequent coughing during meals, very low oral intake, excessive gagging, tongue thrusts and atypical behaviors while eating.

Feeding therapy will consist of the following:

- A team evaluation to assess the issues the child is struggling with when it comes to eating certain foods or not wanting to eat at all.

- Observation of eating patterns.

- Parents input through questionnaire and assist in development of feeding goals.

- Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy and Speech Therapy evaluation.

-3 day food diary review and evaluation by the Registered Dietician.

- Establishing a plan of care with all team members.

- Multidisciplinary Therapy addressing common goals.


“Feeding difficulties impact every part of a child’s life, even delay growth and development. It can be a struggle that happens multiple times a day for a family. We want to be there to help children with feeding difficulties by providing individualized care.” stated Amelia Byars, Speech Language Pathologist at Fairfield Memorial Hospital.

“By providing this service, Fairfield Memorial Hospital is helping to assist parents and their children to identify potential issues and work towards resolving these issues at an early age to help prevent future health issues. Building a strong foundation for future health success is extremely important and Fairfield Memorial Hospital is committed to improving the lives of those we serve.” noted FMH CEO Katherine Bunting-Williams.

Fairfield Memorial Hospital’s Multidisciplinary Pediatric Feeding Program will also have consultations and communication with the child’s provider involved in the patient’s care.  Further resources will be consulted and referred to as needed. For more information on the Multidisciplinary Pediatric Feeding Program please contact FMH Therapy Department at (618) 847-8256. 

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  Fairfield Memorial Hospital   |   303 N. W. 11th St.   |   Fairfield, IL 62837