by Senior Airman Sarah Hall-Kirchner
375th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs
4/10/2015 - SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill. -- Military
children are celebrated each April during the Month of the Military
Child. April is also Military Children's Health Month.
At the 375th Medical Group, four pediatricians and a nurse practitioner
work each day to ensure the health of military children is maintained.
One of those pediatricians, Capt. Chauncey Tarrant, 375th Medical
Operations Squadron General Pediatrician, is a military child herself.
"Being from a military family, I really wanted to give back to the
families who helped to raise me and helped to take care of me," said
She said that when deciding what to do with her life, she wanted to do a job that she would do even if she weren't getting paid.
"I love children for their innocence, and I want to help them," she
said. "I would definitely take care of children for no pay, so I decided
to go into pediatrics, because I knew I would enjoy it every day. This
is also a low stress job, and you get to help children. What could be
She joined the Air Force to go to college and get training as a pediatrician.
"Medical school is really expensive," said Tarrant. "The Air Force
offers scholarships like the Health Professions Scholarship Program,
which is the program I participated in. It allowed me to finance medical
school and serve my country at the same time, which was a win-win for
Tarrant has already begun to make an impact on the medical technician who works with her, Senior Airman Allison Medina.
"Dr. Tarrant is knowledgeable," said Medina. "She is willing to teach me
and to show me how to do everything with the patients. She answers my
questions patiently. She has an encouraging personality, and I like her
Through her work as a pediatrician, Tarrant helps military families and children to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
"A lot of what we do in pediatrics is preventative medicine," said
Tarrant. "It is really important for people to have their kids seen on a
regular basis so that we can ensure that they are growing and
Well-child visits, conducted at set intervals during a child's early
life, and then yearly visits throughout childhood and adolescence, can
help doctors to more easily track a child's wellness.
"We, as a care team, stress the importance of good follow up care and
good rapport with your provider and team," said Tarrant. "We try our
best to incorporate your family into ours as a clinic. It's important to
follow up with your provider. If there is a good relationship then it
is easier to feel like you can reach out."
Getting children into the doctor on a regular basis to be looked at for
common illnesses, or for preventative care, is important, because it can
lead to wellness and a healthier child overall she said.
"It is really a key thing to stay on top of well visits, even if your
child is doing great, just to check in with us to make sure there is
nothing else we need to be doing to make sure they develop in a better
way and make sure there is nothing else that is making them fall
behind," said Tarrant.
If a child is not meeting developmental milestones, the pediatricians at
Scott are able to get them the care that they need. Pediatricians can
refer children directly to the specialists in the local community that
can care for their specific needs.
"Pediatric care plays a big part in making sure military children have
gotten everything they need as far as vaccines, specialty care, and care
for any other illnesses that come up along the way," she said. "We help
guide parents through the whole thing to keep their children well, or
to get them on the road to wellness."
The pediatric clinic hopes to create an open environment where families
feel like they can be seen and get answers to their questions she said.
"We are here to nurture and usher your child through childhood and
adolescence without any problems," said Tarrant. "If you have any
questions, I tell all of my families, no concern is a bad concern, so
even if your child is well or if they are not doing great and may be
ill, ask those questions."
Through her work as a pediatrician, Tarrant hopes she can make a difference.
"Hopefully when it's all said and done and they leave pediatrics, we've helped to nurture a healthy young adult into society."