Kitahama Kids’ Clinic
President Tadashi Kitahama
- Saitama Prefecture
I’ve always been quite popular with children, even when I was one. Kids always gathered around me. Because of that, it seemed quite natural to dream of being a pediatrician in a local town.
In general, it usually takes about 20 years to become experienced enough to open a clinic, after building a career at hospitals and other medical institutions, but my target was 10 years to open my own clinic after graduating from university. So, I found a hospital with a good pediatrics intern program and tried to build my career there for two years. After finishing the intern program, I had enough experience to be an effective member of staff. After five or six years, I started searching for a location for my clinic and a couple of years later, I found an appropriate spot where there were few pediatrics clinics, but lots of children. Although it was a little earlier than my original 10-year plan, I decided to go for it as I believed I had eight years of solid experience since graduating from university. However, I was only 33 and was told that it was too early, and that I needed more experience. But, I had an absolute confidence in the success of my venture as I had built my career focusing specifically on this one objective, and I thought the time was ripe. Fortunately, I had a lot of patients visiting my clinic as soon as it opened.
The most well-received words from visiting parents are “My children don’t cry at this clinic” and “My children want to come here even when they are not sick.” I think this is because of our policy that we don’t do anything that the children don’t want. I think they want to come here because they feel safe here. Asthma and atopic dermatitis are not my specialties, but they are typical children’s diseases. I studied those diseases by myself because I wanted to provide good medical treatment. Kids’ smiles were the driving force for my efforts.
I had managed to open this clinic and make it a success, not only because of my efforts, but also thanks to the support staff, those who were concerned and the patients. In order to solve the low birthrate problem, I think we need to create a society in which mothers and fathers feel comfortable working, and a society in which they feel comfortable raising children. What I can do is not only provide medical treatment for their children but also offer services to parents to help ease the fatigue of child raising. That, I think, would encourage them to have another child.
For now, there are a lot of patients nationwide who need the type of medicine I’m practicing. As the leader of a medical company, I am planning to open a second and a third clinic. Also, I want to create a place where mothers and their kids can get together to exchange information with each other, or go to the beauty salon while we take care of their kids. A place to give families healing and comfort.
- Kitahama Kids’ Clinic
- Kanagawa Prefecture
- Pediatrics, Child Raising Consulting