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Posted September 19, 2013
Live from the ACH Emergency Center – It’s Good Day Tampa Bay!

Dr. Mularoni
Dr. Mularoni
Dr. Brennan
Dr. Brennan
Dr. Perno
Dr. Perno
It's Monday morning at 8 a.m., and ACH trauma room #2 inside the Emergency Center sits empty and quiet. Suddenly, the lights go on. Wires are quickly plugged into the wall.  The gurney is lowered and positioned in the center of the room ready for a patient.

But wait, where's the patient? Where's the trauma? It's only the cameraman from WTVT Fox 13 setting up for the weekly Good Day Tampa Bay Doc on Call segment that broadcasts live every Monday morning from the ACH Trauma Room.

Of course, if a real trauma case came in the door, this makeshift TV studio can quickly transform back into a trauma room to treat a patient.

Now in its second year, Doc on Call is a regular Monday feature at 8:50 a.m. The three minute live  segment features ACH physicians who offer important information to parents about ways keep their kids healthy, safe and out of the emergency center.

"The segments give us a way to educate families and will hopefully prevent a trip to the emergency department," says Dr. Joe Perno, Assistant Medical Director of the ACH Emergency Department who along with Dr. Lisa Brennan and Dr. Patrick Mularoni take turns hosting the weekly segments.

"We try to pick subjects that are topical and issues that are in the news. We also look at what's going on from a seasonal perspective. We see certain things at different times of the year. We want to address the most common medical issues parent s may have questions about." 

"The segment is a great community outreach for the hospital," said Dr. Patrick Mularoni. "We can provide a lot of information that parents might not know.  If a child comes in with a fever, I provide a lot of the same information to that child's family that I might also say on television. The TV segment allows us to reach a much broader audience in fulfilling our mission.

"The type of segments I enjoy doing most are about medical myths. I like to help dispel some of the things that all of us hold in our hearts that our parents may have taught us that might not really be true.  We can clear up a lot of rumors and make sure parents know the right things to do."

The docs do more than just show up for the segment, there's a lot of preparation that goes into selecting and researching topics for the weekly segments. 

"I look at what's going on in the community when deciding the topic I want to cover," says Dr. Lisa Brennan. "Sometimes, I look for pediatric medical issues that are trending on a local and national level. There are also many health and safety awareness weeks that are recognized each year. We look at those topics as well to see if there is information that might be helpful to families." 

All three doctors agree that one of the benefits of doing a weekly television segment is that they are much more recognizable with patients and families.

"It's good to have that facial recognition," said Dr. Brennan. "It helps give us more credibility for what we do. Many times families are more at ease when we walk in the room and they recognize us from TV."

"We can't do enough segments for parents about issues involving kids," said Roshni Hannon, Executive Producer at WTVT Channel 13.

"Our audience at that time of the morning is parents. Every time our production team would sit down and talk about possible segments or topics for Good Day Tampa Bay, something always came up about kids involving health and safety issues. We realized we really needed a pediatrician to help us address these issues.

"These docs do a great job taking the topic and making the translation to the TV audience. They provide vital information that no one else can give us."

Watch Good Day Tampa Bay's Doc on Call segments on WTVT Fox 13, Monday mornings at 8:50 a.m. or you can view past segments on the All Children's Hospital web page.