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Bright Futures

Articles and Updates from Phoenix Children's

Junio 25, 2020, Blake Bulloch, MD
The Importance of Getting Your Child Emergency Care – Even During COVID-19

For the past few months, parents have been rightfully concerned about COVID-19- related illnesses and protecting their children from them. However, these fears should not prevent parents from bringing their children to the Phoenix Children’s Emergency Department (ED) for medical care. During this time, many other childhood illnesses and injuries continue to occur as they normally would. When emergencies happen, we urge you to bring your child into the ED right away, as a delay in care may end up causing even more severe illnesses or progression of diseases.

Unfortunately, a result of the novel coronavirus pandemic is that people are scared to bring their child to the ED when they have a medical issue that requires emergency care for fear of being exposed to the virus. As testing has become more readily available, most children are being tested at their primary care providers or other testing sites. However, we are seeing children presenting later in other unrelated illnesses, causing delays in diagnoses and treatments that result in longer or more complicated hospital stays.

It should be noted that the majority of children who contract COVID-19 do very well. At Phoenix Children’s, we are aggressively taking the necessary precautions to prevent the possible spread of infection.

Patients arriving at the Phoenix Children’s ED are provided with masks upon arrival and they are screened for COVID-19 symptoms. For added safety, only one adult is permitted with a patient for visits to the ED. Patients with symptoms are kept apart from patients without symptoms. The triage process and flow through the department have been modified for your safety as well. We screen families at the entrance, and if we identify symptoms that could be COVID-19-related, they are directed one way through the department. Patients without symptoms are directed through another door to ensure proper social distancing. Our staff separates high-risk patients from lower-risk patients. This flow is maintained throughout the department. The waiting areas have also been modified to help maintain social distancing of six feet, and all ED staff wear masks at all times.

From nurses and physicians to our environmental services employees, registration staff and patient care technicians, all ED staff are involved in maintaining a clean and secure facility. We instituted a policy early in the pandemic that all our providers wear masks and other proper personal protective equipment. The entire hospital staff is focused on providing a safer environment with enhanced hygiene protocols, social distancing, use of personal protective equipment and other safety measures.

When emergencies happen, you can trust Phoenix Children’s. Phoenix Children’s is Arizona’s only American College of Surgeons-verified Level 1 Pediatric Trauma Center. Critically injured children treated at these centers, like ours, have better outcomes and shorter lengths of stay than other hospitals that don’t have pediatric trauma programs.

We are here for you 24/7, providing the best care for your child when it matters most.

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