My name is Krista Cox and I mainly grew up in Garden City, KS. Back then, it was small town life. I would walk to town end for end numerous times a week. You could not go any where without knowing people. Because of the numerous feed lots surrounding the city and my allergies, I was often ill and saw my pediatrician frequently. I grew to admire him and what he did, eventually he was the reason for me wanting to practice pediatrics.
Baby & Child Associates was founded in 1979 by the late Dr. Frank Vaughters right here in the heart of Kansas City. We have spent over 40 years dedicated to the health and wellbeing of our patients from birth to young adulthood.
I have been practicing at Baby and Child Associates since December 1999 and did my training at Children’s Mercy Hospital. Reach Out and Read started in the Kansas City area while I was in residency and was there for the origination of the program locally. When I left residency, I specifically asked my new employer if they would be willing to start ROR in the clinic. It was a resounding yes! Baby and Child Associates became the first non- KU/non Children’s Mercy site.
ROR-KC is a lifeline for our families and patients. Over the 20+ years I have worked at Baby and Child Associates, I have seen a dramatic shift in parents’ attitudes about reading. I used to hear continually that they do not read as daycare doesn’t. Now, reading is part of our families culture. The kids come in asking for books and infants immediately grab the books and mouth them. The parents usually recognize this is normal now and do not scold the infant and take the book away. I have as young as 9-month-old patients that will tell me book and give me a huge smile when I hand them the book. I see that a larger percentage of our patients are ready for kindergarten than when I first started here and that almost all of our young patients value books and like being read to. ROR-KC has made a difference in my clinic by giving me a tool to help children succeed in life, as it has enabled them to have books in the home beginning at a young age. This is a total change in culture of our patient population.
-Dr. Krista Cox, MD