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One day in 2019, as Kimberly Davis and her husband drove by South Texas Health System Children’s in Edinburg, he said casually but with confidence, “There’s your future job right there.”
Turns out he has a knack for telling the future because nearly four years later, Davis is exactly where he said she’d be.
Davis has officially become the first to take on the position of pediatric administrator at STHS Children’s where she is determined to make a difference in pediatric care in the Rio Grande Valley.
“I love a challenge,” Davis said with determination Friday morning. “I really do feel like my experience coming from children’s health in Dallas, it’s given me a lot of perspectives, specialties that can be offered and what that looks like.”
Lance Ames, who serves as the chief executive officer at STHS Children’s and Edinburg, praised Davis’ hiring in a news release from the hospital system.
“Kimberly brings a wealth of knowledge in pediatrics and children’s hospital administration that will help expand and improve the services we provide to local children,” Ames said in the release. “I look forward to seeing how our dedication to the children of the Rio Grande Valley will continue to grow under her stewardship.”
Davis, who is originally from Richardson, Texas, began working in the medical field as a nurse and later transferred to pediatric care in 2012 where she continued to advance in her career, going from charge nurse to team leader to manager and even director, and now moving on to pediatric administrator.
Although she’s only been on the job for four weeks now, Davis is already looking into how the hospital can improve in order to meet the needs of the community.
“I’m still in the investigative phase of understanding the service we offer and really investigating in terms of what our community needs most,” Davis said. “When it comes to growth we want to start in the areas that need it most and then branch out from there.”
The new pediatrics admin for STHS Children’s takes over the position in a region struggling with obesity and diabetes. According to research from the American School Health Association, obesity is 19.2% more prevalent for boys and 16.8% for girls between the ages of 4 and 7.
The association’s conclusions, which were reported in 2020, found that children “living in low-income areas are affected by high levels of social and health risk factors.”
“It is these families who should be targeted with early-age and culturally appropriate health programs,” the association said in its 2020 research article.
I’m still in the investigative phase of understanding the service we offer and really investigating in terms of what our community needs most. When it comes to growth we want to start in the areas that need it most and then branch out from there.
Davis explained that her goal for STHS Children’s is to expand the services provided at the hospital that will prevent families from having to travel out of the Valley for certain treatments.
“I want our community to know that we’re here for them. Everything that we do is to help our pediatric population,” Davis said tenderly.
Whether from East Texas or South Texas, Davis also assured that she’s rooted in the community by adopting the plight of local children as her own.
“When I look at a kid I see that’s someone’s heart and soul right there and so I think that messaging and that mentality is what’s going to help us provide the best care to our patients. We want to keep them close, we want their families to be involved and we want to hear what they have to say because they’re going to be the ones that tell us what they need.”