New pediatrics rehab program launches


Children with disabilities finally get the attention they need at the Ability Rehabilitation Specialists in La Jolla, which opened a pediatrics program this March.

Ability Rehabilitation Specialists, located on Pearl Street, has offered adult neurological, balance and orthopedic therapy to the San Diego community and beyond for almost four years. But founder Julie Stevens Hom decided that now was the time to start a pediatrics rehabilitation program.

“There’s a lot of need out there and we are trying to help fill that void … we are eager to help parents in any way possible,” Hom explained.

Parents are turning to Ability Rehabilitation Specialists for individualized, tailored therapy for their children – the program is the first in the Village area to offer physical, occupational and speech therapy all in one location, Hom said.

The pediatrics program treats a variety of diagnoses of general communication, developmental and movement issues such as autism, Asperger’s syndrome, cerebral palsy, spinal cord injuries, Down syndrome, learning disabilities and childhood obesity.

Many parents encounter long waiting lists in children’s hospitals or clinics and inadequate face-to-face therapy time, according to Hom. The average of 15 to 30 minutes of therapy time is barely enough for a child to warm up to a therapist and get the attention he or she needs, she said.

The therapy specialists say they pride themselves on being able to see each client right when they need treatment without the hassle of long lines and stressful scheduling. Therapists are available for 45 minutes to an hour, an unusual amount of time for most rehabilitation specialists.

If your child is having difficulty with something that other kids of similar age are able to do, Hom’s therapists offer free screenings to evaluate what’s contributing to the issue and help figure out ways to improve upon whatever deficit they may have.

Ability Rehab has afternoon and evening appointments available and a therapist will visit the patient’s home or school, if necessary.

“If a kid needs it, we will do it,” Hom said.

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