Mount Nittany Health opens new pediatric facility at Bellefonte location

Mount Nittany Health officials didn’t want the new Bellefonte Pediatric Center to look like a hospital.

The health system used bright colors and child-friendly shapes to adorn the center and make children feel more comfortable about visiting.

CEO Steve Brown said the facility’s move from 141 Medical Park Lane to 129 Medical Park Lane in Bellefonte fills an increasing community need.

He said the move frees up more space on the Bellefonte campus and keeps children out of the main Mount Nittany Medical Center campus in College Township. The movement in child medicine is to serve needs in clinics and with preventative measures, instead of keeping them in hospitals for long stays.

“You don’t hospitalize kids anymore,” he said. “Everything that you can do to keep kids out of a hospital, you do.”

Brown said he’s delighted with the way the facility turned out, saying it seems warm and inviting. He said it’s the kind of place that kids might not be worried to visit.

The Bellefonte location serves people from State College and other portions of the county as a niche facility. The building includes eight examination rooms, a central nurses station and a large waiting room.

Another reason for the move was to put it next to the new Centre County Children’s Advocacy Center, to have pediatricians on site if any need arises.

The CAC, which opened in November, is designed is to provide a friendly, comforting setting for children affected by crime. There, caseworkers, police officers, prosecutors and doctors can interview children in a less intimidating environment than a police station.

The Bellefonte facility is one of 15 Mount Nittany Health Health System locations serving more than five counties. Brown said physicians in Bellefonte cycle through the system from the main hospital and the Boalsburg facility.