HERNANDO COUNTY, Fla. (September 23, 2022) — HCA Florida Oak Hill Hospital recently received 560 books for babies through the Early Learning Coalition of Pasco and Hernando Counties’ (ELCPH) LOVING START early literacy program. The program is part of Free Spirit Publishing’s Happy Healthy Baby Series. From the moment a child is born, this collection of publications was designed to assist new parents in their desire to develop language and connection.
HCA Florida Oak Hill Hospital is projected to deliver 1,600 babies this year, nearly 400 of which will graduate from the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). The hospital’s 16 private NICU suites allow parents space and privacy to bond with, and now read to, their baby.
“Early literacy is a critical component to a child’s development,” said David P. Slovut, Chief Medical Officer. “We’re extremely grateful to the Early Learning Coalition of Pasco and Hernando for providing babies their first book. We’re set to care for more than 1600 babies this year, who will enjoy hearing the sound of their parents and families reading to them as a result of this generous donation.”
Young children benefit from early literacy as it helps them develop their language skills and gets them prepared for school. Since 2005, the ELCPH has supported high-quality education for children from birth to age 5 in Pasco and Hernando Counties.
“Children are better prepared for the benefits of early literacy through early reading experiences with their parents. We are pleased to partner with HCA Florida Oak Hill Hospital which recognizes the need of strengthening the bond between a parent and child as they read and cuddle.” said Coalition Executive Director Dr. Steve Knobl.
LOVING START operates under ELCPH, a 501c3 organization. For more information on this literacy commitment, contact Organizational and Public Engagement Supervisor Sherri Sabadishin, at 727-233-8291.
About HCA Florida Oak Hill Hospital
HCA Florida Oak Hill Hospital has been serving the Nature Coast since 1984 and is the largest private employer and largest hospital in Hernando County with 350 beds. The facility offers Hernando County’s only heart surgery program. Other key services include the maternity suites, neonatal intensive care, women’s imaging, cancer care, orthopedics, and spine services. HCA Florida Oak Hill Hospital’s healthcare delivery team is comprised of more than 600 physicians, 1,800 caregivers, and more than 100 volunteers. The hospital is a statutory teaching hospital training the next generation of physicians. For more information, visit HCAFloridaHealthcare.com
About the ELCPH
The Early Learning Coalition of Pasco and Hernando Counties, Inc. is a 501c3 organization and one of 30 Early Learning Coalitions in Florida. Florida’s Voluntary Prekindergarten (VPK) program is for all children who are four-years old on or before September 1. School Readiness provides subsidized childcare for low-to-moderate income working families. The nonprofit serves over 10,000 children between infancy and twelve-years old, working with more than 266 childcare providers in both counties.