Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19): Frequently Updated

As part of our commitment to the region’s children and families, Nicklaus Children’s Hospital is in daily contact with local, state and federal agencies to monitor the situation, and is prepared to evaluate and care for patients with COVID-19 or suspected COVID-19.

virus image white framing element
virus image white framing element

This page was last updated on: 9/1/2020 9:56:14 AM

A Message to Families About Our Safety Enhancements


COVID-19 Testing

Nicklaus Children’s Hospital’s Emergency Department and Urgent Care Centers provide testing for children who are displaying symptoms of COVID-19 such as:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

Our staff will contact the parents or guardians of any child with a positive result within 7-10 days of testing.

Parents can access the child's medical records and lab results online by visiting MyKids Patient Portal. For information about MyKids and instructions on how to register, please visit nicklauschildrens.org/Patient-Portal

Updates to Our Services

Nicklaus Service Updates

  • Elective Surgeries - With the safety of the public as its first priority, the state of Florida has approved resumption of elective surgeries at area hospitals and surgery centers. Nicklaus Children’s has activated and phased plan to safely resume elective procedures at its main hospital campus and at Nicklaus Children’s Ambulatory Surgery Center. For more information, please contact your child’s surgeon.
  • Emergency Department (ER) - Concerned that your child needs emergency care? Don’t wait. Delays in seeking care can lead to complications. Nicklaus Children’s Emergency Department has current safety practices related to COVID-19 to protect your child and family.
  • Subspecialty Clinics - Telehealth services may be available for certain appointments depending on the nature of the condition, or reason for the visit. For more information, please contact the subspecialist’s office directly or call the Customer Care line at 1-888-624-2778.
  • Urgent Care Centers - The Main Campus and Pinecrest urgent care centers are closed until further notice. Please find the urgent care center nearest you for non-emergency services. Connect with a Nicklaus Children’s provider for non-emergency pediatric care or questions regarding #COVID19 Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. Download NCHS Anywhere for Apple or Google Play. Visit NicklausChildrensVirtualCare.org to learn more.
  • Rehabilitation Services at Nicklaus Children's Sports Health Center in Pinecrest - The Nicklaus Children’s Sports Health Center physical therapy services in Pinecrest are temporarily unavailable. All other Nicklaus Children’s locations offering rehabilitation services are now open. To schedule rehabilitative services at a Nicklaus Children’s outpatient location, please call Rehabilitation Services at 1-877-255-8437. Please note that physician consults for cardiology, dermatology and orthopedics  are currently open and available in Pinecrest at 11521 South Dixie Highway, Suite 201.  
  • Dental Services - The Nicklaus Children’s Hospital Dental Department will resume care at our Doral Outpatient Center for both emergency and non-emergency appointments. Our Dental Mobile Unit will remain closed until further notice. Our number one priority is to keep patients, families and our personnel safe. Should your child require any emergency dental care, please call our clinic at 786-624-3368 as you normally would and our personnel will assist. More details.
  • Gift Shop - The Nicklaus Children’s Hospital Gift Shop has reopened with hours of operation from Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. More details.
logo
Telehealth services may be available for certain appointments depending on the nature of the condition, or reason for the visit. Please contact us for more information by calling 1-888-624-2778 or submitting an online appointment request.

Keeping You and Your Child Safe as We Resume Operations

As We Resume Operations

At Nicklaus Children’s Hospital, the health and safety of your child and family is our utmost concern. As we resume many elective services, we want to advise you of new practices at our offices and facilities to enhance the safety of all.

  • Visitor Restrictions: As a safety precaution, we are limiting visitors in our facilities. For both outpatient visits and inpatient admissions, including surgery, we ask that only one adult parent or guardian may accompany the child at the hospital. Please make arrangements for the care of other children prior to your visit.
    For everyone’s safety, one adult parent/guardian will be designated to stay with the child at the time of admission and remain with the child throughout the hospitalization. If the designated parent/guardian becomes ill, a new adult member of the family can be assigned to stay with the child. No other visitors will be able to visit the child or family to prevent potential transmission to others.
    For children with special needs such as those with autism or other medical conditions that require additional caregiver support, we will make accommodations and exceptions on a case-by-case basis.
  • Arrival Screenings: As implemented as a precaution at most South Florida hospitals, we continue to provide temperature screening for all visitors, patients and staff upon arrival.
  • Masks and Personal Protective Equipment: We ask that you and your child wear a mask upon arrival at any facility. All Nicklaus Children’s staff will be wearing masks and other personal protective equipment as well. It is important that masks cover the nose and mouth at all times. Please do not remove the child’s mask unless asked to by your care provider. Children under 2 years of age should not wear masks.
  • Advance Testing: If your child is having elective surgery or a procedure, a pre-procedure testing appointment will be scheduled two to three days prior. 
  • Physical Distancing: Nicklaus Children’s is using modified scheduling practices to minimize the number of patients in common areas. You will also see prompts to help promote physical distancing in common areas. Please help your child to follow prompts for your protection and that of others.
  • Cleaning Practices and Hand Hygiene: Deep cleanings of clinical spaces and common areas take place throughout the day to ensure that surfaces are regularly disinfected. We encourage you to wash your hands frequently or use hand sanitizer. Hand sanitizer dispensers are located throughout all facilities.
  • Advance Registration and Virtual Visits: To minimize touch points, many services feature advance phone registration. Many providers also offer virtual visits. Before scheduling a virtual visit, the provider will ensure you have the needed technology and instructions to help you prepare for that visit. It’s easy and we will walk you through every step of the process. Depending on the reason for your visits, we may need to see you in person or via a combination of in person and virtual visits. We will work with you on the best appointment type for each visit. 
  • Complimentary Parking: Nicklaus Children’s provides free parking to patient families and visitors in either its Blue Garage (located off of SW 62 Avenue entrance or the Green Garage off of the Devonshire Boulevard entrance). As a safety measure, valet parking services are temporarily suspended.

How Nicklaus Children’s is Working to Keep You Safe

How Nicklaus Children’s is Working to Keep You Safe

Nicklaus Children’s is closely monitoring the international and regional impact of COVID-19. As part of our commitment to the health and safety of our patients, visitors and staff, we have implemented new screening protocols and visitation practices recommended by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

alert iconNew Screening Protocol on Arrival

Everyone arriving at the main hospital or an outpatient center will receive an initial screening by the care team regarding specific criteria set forth by the CDC.

Fewer Campus Entrances at Main Campus

To ensure that we properly screen all patients and visitors at our hospital, we are limiting the number of entrances. For more details, visit Planning Your Visit.

New Visitor Policy for Inpatients and Emergency Room Visits

  • Due to the current higher-than-usual rate of respiratory infections in our community, we have enacted changes to our inpatient, emergency room and outpatient care setting patient visitor policy across the health system. We are asking patient families to adhere to the following practices to ensure the safety of the children in our care.
  • The new visitation policy limit visits with hospitalized children to only the same two people per room per day. Visitors can include parents or legally authorized representatives. No siblings are permitted at this time, with the exception of breastfeeding babies.  
  • For an emergency department visit, we ask that parents not bring other family members. Limiting visitors is an important way we can limit the spread of illness and keep everyone safe.

New Visitor Policy for Outpatient Visits, Urgent Care and Clinic Visits.

  • A maximum of one (1) primary caregiver can accompany a patient who has an appointment at any of our clinics/centers or medical offices.
  • Please do not bring extra family or friends to these visits (especially children under 12 years old).
  • All visitors should perform hand hygiene upon arrival.

New Food Service Practices

The Nicklaus Food Service team is following guidelines from the CDC, local and state health officials, and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), National Restaurant Association, and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. As such, we are taking the following precautions in food services areas:

  • The salad bar in the Golden Cub Café has been modified to offer an assortment of individually packaged fruit cups and salads.
  • Soups and cereals are now served by staff, rather than the self-service format.
  • Additional sanitizing stations have been installed in all retail venues.
  • All food service team members are ServSafe certified and are taking additional precautions, including increasing the frequency of hand washing and glove changes.
  • Dining seating areas in the Golden Cub Café and other food service areas are being cleaned and sanitized by our team members with a multi-surface cleaner and disinfectant with increased frequency throughout the day.
  • We have eliminated trays for dine-in café orders and will continue to provide bags for customer convenience.

Working to Protect Our Community

Nicklaus Children’s leaders and staff are working diligently to ensure that hospital care teams are prepared to meet the needs of the local pediatric population. We receive daily guidance from the CDC and health departments, and communicate each day with staff to keep everyone informed. We have conducted extensive staff training related to best care management practices to ensure teams are prepared as the situation evolves.

How You Can Help Keep Yourself and Others Safe

Domestic & International Travel Alerts

For the latest information on domestic and international travel advisories, please visit the CDC's Travel During COVID-19 webpage

To view health recommendations by destination, visit the CDC’s webpage for your destination


How You Can Help Keep Others Safe at Nicklaus

All parents/guardians accompanying children during medical appointments must be free of signs and symptoms of infectious disease, including cough, runny nose, rash, vomiting and fever. Please notify the medical provider caring for your child if you are anyone else in the home has a fever, cough, rash, shortness of breath, or any other signs of respiratory infection.

Physical Distancing

According to the Florida Department of Health, physical distancing is recommended when the risk of infection is possible. This can include limiting gatherings of large groups, or postponing events.

What You Can Do to Stop The Spread of Germs

cover coughs and sneezes
social distancing explained for kids

Video: Proper Handwashing

How to decide if you should be tested or seek care

Provided by the CDC: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/symptoms-testing/symptoms.html
Not everyone needs to be tested for COVID-19. Here is some information that might help you make decisions about seeking medical care or testing.

  • Most people have mild illness and are able to recover at home without medical care. They may not need to be tested.
  • There is no treatment specifically approved for people who have COVID-19.
  • If you think you may be sick, stay home and consult with your healthcare provider on the need for testing.

CDC has guidance for who should be tested, but decisions about testing are at the discretion of state and local health departments and/or individual clinicians.

  • Clinicians should work with their state and local health departments to coordinate testing through public health laboratories, or work with clinical or commercial laboratories.

Do you have questions about COVID-19 and your child’s health?

Please call our COVID-19 Community Information Hotline.
Hours are 9 am. To 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
305-669-7191

You can also contact the Florida Department of Health's COVID-19 Information Hotline
866-779-6121 or COVID-19@flhealth.gov

make a donation to our COVID-19 fund

How You Can Help: The COVID-19 Relief Fund

As COVID-19 continues to impact our community in unprecedented ways, our dedicated doctors and healthcare workers at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital are working around the clock to continue safeguarding our patients and families while delivering quality care. Here’s how you can help.

The Nicklaus Children’s COVID-19 Fund helps fortify our hospital and patients so we can continue providing life-saving care during these uncertain times. All donations to the COVID-19 Fund will support Nicklaus Children’s patients, their families and healthcare workers who have been affected in any way, in addition to supporting efforts that allow us to innovate and adapt to our rapidly evolving environment. Will you help us keep our vital work going strong?

Your donation to the Nicklaus Children’s COVID-19 Fund is crucial in helping us keep our vital care and services strong and our patients healthy. Read a message from our Foundation President for more information.

Donate Now