Silvia N. Jaimes Ocazionez, M.D., known simply as Dr. Natalia Jaimes (HAI-mez), is youthful, petite and chocolate-eyed, with a smattering of freckles across her nose. She speaks softly using excellent English, retaining the staccato of her original Spanish language. She is assured, but gentle. You instantly sense children would love to have her as their pediatrician.
Gentle in appearance, she’s a heavy hitter as a medical practitioner. Born in Colombia, South America, Jaimes attended private medical school at Bogota’s Pontificia Universidad Javeriana. Fulfilling her desire to “help the poor,” she practiced medicine in the Amazon River region. Inspired by that experience, she studied clinical epidemiology at Erasmus University in Rotterdam, Netherlands.
Jaimes came to the United States in 2004 to do a pediatric internship and residency at Mount Sinai’s School of Medicine in New York. She is American Board of Pediatrics certified. She worked seven years in Wilson, N.C., at a private pediatric practice and at the Wilson Medical Center Hospital.
Her Immigration VISA, International Waiver for Service and green card that allow her to work in the United States did not come free. Jaimes spent more than $40,000 working through the complicated process to work here. She is a mother to two – a boy and girl – and is married to a photographer who is able to be at home with their children.
Jaimes’ office is full of their art, and his. She moved to Roanoke in 2014 and works as a pediatrician in the Children’s Clinic in Jefferson Plaza. Jaimes is a leader in the Roanoke/Blacksburg region medical arts field. She is a faculty member, helping train medical students in the field of pediatrics from Carilion/Virginia Tech School of Medicine, The Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine and physician assistants students from Jefferson College. She supervises clinical residents of family medicine and pediatrics at Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital and runs their journal club.
Carilion’s Children’s Clinic is a not-for-profit component of the hospital system that treats a diverse population of children, many from the inner city and rural areas and on Medicaid, including refugees/immigrants. “We work with people in need,” Jaimes said. “We try to provide hope and education. We want all our patients to feel special. We help parents do the best for their kids.”
The Clinic is full service, providing annual exams, behavioral health, contraception, diagnosis and treatment of acute illness or injury, diagnosis and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases, immunizations, newborn care, nutrition counseling, school, sports and camp physicals, treatment of chronic and recurrent health conditions and routines checkups.
The pediatric practitioners provide follow-up care to children who have been hospitalized at Carilion. The Clinic also is a teaching facility. Twenty faculty members focus on training pediatricians who will be ready for general practice or go on to additional specialized training. The program focuses on six graduate medical school residents per year, allowing for individual attention to each resident’s educational needs and professional goals.
“Our students are inspiring because they are so eager to learn,” said Jaimes. “I tell my students who come from disadvantaged backgrounds, go tell your story. Nothing is sadder than when nobody expects anything of you…Inspire these kids!”
The Children’s Clinic, Carilion’s website states: “…we work together to provide quality care close to home for nearly one million Virginian. With an enduring commitment to the health of our region, we also seek to advance care through medical education and research, help our community stay healthy and inspire our region to grow stronger.”
“I am so happy to work here,” Jaimes said.
Carilion Children’s Pediatric Medicine – Jefferson Plaza
1030 S Jefferson St, Suite 106 Roanoke, VA 24016
Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital
By Linda Pharis