Emergency Rooms for Children: July 6, 2019
With more than 200,000 children in Lee County, health experts decided there was a great need for a children’s emergency department. “Just based on census data alone, we know that we have over 260,000 children in our surrounding community,” said Armando Llechu, Chief Administrative Office at Golisano Children’s Hospital of Southwest Florida.
A large number that health experts predict will only continue to grow. “There’s plenty of kids and plenty of need,” said Llechu.
Last year, the Golisano Children’s Hospital Emergency Department treated almost 31,000 children. “We’ve got basically all the key pediatric subspecialties that we need. Very few of our patients are transferred out of the area,” said Llechu.
But going to the emergency department can be a scary for children and parents, which is why Golisano Children’s Hospital designed the first emergency department in the area just for children. “We’ve got child life specialists who are trained in distraction, who help these children process what’s happening to them and what’s going to happen to them. We have pet therapy four and five days a week. We even have “Take a Book” program where if your child picks up a book to read they get to take it home with them,” said Llechu.
Decorated with an interactive wall, games, toys and stuffed animals, Golisano Children’s Hospital is designed to make children and families feel comfortable while they receive care. Most importantly, children are seen quickly by pediatric emergency care specialists. “Typically you are seeing a provider of some sort within three minutes of arrival and have seen a physician within 22 minutes of arriving at our ER,” said Llechu.
Getting children quick and thorough care, while keep them calm and entertained during their emergency visit.