The Caring Hearts Story
Caring Hearts is a family-owned business founded by Gabriel Tejerina, an entrepreneur, and Betty Tejerina, a hospital social worker.
In 1995, the Tejerina family owned a typical child development center in Naples, FL. One day a young single mother with a baby walked through the doors of the daycare in a desperate state. Her baby boy had muscular dystrophy and required an apnea monitor. Because of the child’s illness and technological dependence, no daycare center would accept her son. As a result, the mother could not have a job and was struggling to support her young family.
Betty took the child in on a temporary basis while trying to find a facility that could provide the elevated level of care the child would require as his disease progressed. She and Gabriel discovered that there was no such facility in Naples or the surrounding area, but that the legislature had created the framework for a health benefit called Prescribed Pediatric Extended Care (PPEC). PPEC is similar to a traditional child development center, but it also offers the level of medical care required by special needs children.
In the next year Betty and Gabe transformed the development center into a PPEC with that same baby boy as the first patient. Two years later, Sacred Heart Hospital, Children’s Medical Services and the local Medicaid office invited and supported Betty and Gabe in opening a PPEC for Pensacola Fl, followed by another in Crestview, Fl. The Tejerina family feels honored to have been able to provide quality service to the medically needy for the last seventeen years.