In July 1987, Mike Zarcone purchased Saratoga Place Skilled Nursing Facility with his partner, Connie Rolfe, RN converted it into a subacute facility. Mike and Connie changed the name to Subacute Saratoga Hospital and converted it into a subacute facility serving regional acute care hospitals and their patients.
Two years later, Mike was approached by Santa Clara Valley Medical Center about providing ventilator care to a ten-month old baby, Crystal. Crystal was the first-ever pediatric patient to be admitted to a skilled nursing facility in the state of California. Shortly after admitting Crystal, hospitals throughout Northern California began reaching out to Subacute Saratoga in order to place other technology-dependent children in this unique facility. The need for an alternative level of care for severely disabled or catastrophically injured children was growing. Technology dependent children were tying up cribs in the pediatric intensive care units of Bay Area hospitals for months, and even years. These children were not receiving active rehabilitation services because acute hospitals are focused on saving the lives of critically ill children, not on their long term rehabilitation. Serving these children became Mike’s mission and singular passion.
In 1993 California passed AB-36, the Pediatric Subacute Legislation Act, and in April 1994 the program was made available statewide. In 1998, Mike purchased an acute care hospital in neighboring Campbell, a facility that became the Children’s Recovery Center. Together, these two facilities represent the only State certified pediatric subacute hospitals in Northern California. In order to expand the exceptional clinical care to children who were machine dependent yet lived with their parents, Mike created Scribbles and Giggles Pediatric Day Health Care, which now operates in two South Bay locations.
With Mike’s death in 2014, children in California lost a powerful advocate and loving friend. Today, the facilities Mike founded are owned and operated by Innovations Health Systems, LLC as the Pediatric Recovery Network. Ken McGuire and Dan Niccum, owners of IHS, are committed to continuing Mike’s legacy of providing world-class medical attention in a homelike environment.