Children's Healthcare of Atlanta to close satellite locations

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A group of parents are worried and upset over a decision by Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta to close some neighborhood facilities and cutback services at others.

Closing is Children’s at Alpharetta Highway and Children’s at Mount Zion. Rehabilitation services are being cut at six satellite locations. The parents say that could have negative consequences for children with disabilities and many military families.

“I am trying not to cry but it’s really hard,” said mother Vanessa Corrilo. Her twins Aaron and Ayala have been getting therapy at the CHOA clinic at Piedmont Fayette Hospital. If their program is cut in Fayette and they have to drive two hours one-way in Atlanta traffic every day.

“I am going to have to choose between their education and their therapy. That makes me look like a bad mom,” she said.

Here is what Jessica Pope the Public Relations Manager told FOX 5 News:

“Over several years, we’ve seen a decline in volume to the point where it is not practical to deliver outpatient rehabilitation care at these locations. While it may appear that affected clinics are busy, that is due to how we adjust our clinic days, hours and staffing based on scheduled patient visits.”

Cierra Beach has twins Abigail and Addison.

“One of my daughters receives extensive speech therapy which could lead to up to six appointments a week,” she said.

The parents have started a Facebook group Speak Up for the Southside to demand CHOA to reconsider.

“If anything we need more services down here currently,” said Magan Bellflower whose son Aubrey has Autism.

Here’s what’s affected staring in December according to CHOA:

“This change specifically affects audiology and outpatient rehabilitation. Those services will no longer be offered at Alpharetta Highway, Mount Zion, Sandy Plains, Forsyth, Fayette and Satellite Boulevard by December 31, 2019. Please note, only two locations will close: Children’s at Alpharetta Highway and Children’s at Mount Zion.”

Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta declined to say how many workers are affected. But they said they are hoping to place them at other facilities.