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New Rheumatology Clinic To Offer Mobile Children Improved Access To Specialty Care
MOBILE – Children with juvenile arthritis, autoimmune disorders and other rheumatologic conditions will soon have improved access to expert care. A new pediatric rheumatology clinic is the result of a partnership between the University of South Alabama (USA) Department of Pediatrics, Children’s of Alabama and the University of Alabama School of Medicine (UASOM) Department of Pediatrics.

Pediatric rheumatologist Melissa Mannion, M.D., M.S.P.H., will begin seeing patients in the Mobile clinic in late June in the USA Pediatric Specialty Clinic located at 1504 Springhill Avenue. The clinic will be held initially every other month on the 3rd or 4th Friday of the month. Dr. Mannion is an instructor in the UASOM Department of Pediatrics’ Division of Pediatric Rheumatology and treats patients at Children’s of Alabama in Birmingham. She received her medical degree from Eastern Virginia Medical School and completed her pediatric residency and pediatric rheumatology fellowship training at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). Mannion also earned a master’s degree in Public Health from the UAB School of Public Health. She is board-certified in pediatrics and pediatric rheumatology.

To make a clinic referral, referring physicians should call 205-638-9438. Previously, children with these type health conditions had limited access to specialty care and many times had to travel outside Mobile for treatment.

“We are excited to be able to offer this to the Mobile community and eager to begin,” said Randy Cron, M.D., Ph.D., director of pediatric rheumatology at UAB and Children’s of Alabama and a Professor of pediatrics and medicine at UAB. “USA has been an outstanding partner and this clinic is the fruit of that labor. Dr. Mannion is ideal for this outreach and we are confident that over the years many children living in south Alabama will lead healthier lives because of these efforts.”

Dr. David Gremse, professor and chair of the USA department of pediatrics, said partnerships such as this one represent the parallel missions of both organizations to improve the health of children throughout our state. “Our collaboration with Children’s of Alabama and UAB takes advantage of our ties to academic pediatric specialists throughout the state and allows children to receive the expert care they need in an appropriate child-friendly environment without having to leave Mobile.”

Alabama has two specialty pediatric hospitals dedicated to the care of its youngest patients - Children’s of Alabama and USA Children’s & Women’s Hospital in Mobile. As academic health centers, USA and UAB have clinical faculty who provide unique specialty care to pediatric patients, train the next generation of pediatric specialists and explore new ways to advance medical treatments.