Like many hospitals across the nation, healthcare facilities in South Florida have experienced a trend in decreased numbers of emergency room visits in recent weeks due to social distancing warnings.
However, as many parents know, children can still have accidents at home. A bump on the head from playing too rough or an open wound after scraping a knee, these are just some of the types of injuries that can occur within and around the home.
Michelle Blumstein, Medical Director of Trauma Services at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital, says the emergency room has seen an increase in children coming in for emergency care with injuries that appear to be days old.
“Parents are waiting days before finally deciding to visit the emergency room with their injured child. However, delaying care can be dangerous. Wounds can become infected, fractures can worsen and oftentimes a clinical evaluation is needed. We want to ensure children receive the right care at the right time,” said Dr. Blumstein.
Nicklaus Children’s has implemented measures to enhance safety and encourage physical distancing. Patients, parents and guests, as well as employees, receive a temperature screening when arriving at any of the entrances of the hospital. Adults and children older than two years of age are asked to wear a mask when arriving to any Nicklaus Children’s location.
Upon arrival in the emergency room, parents are asked a series of questions to determine the appropriate zone of care for the child and family. In the common areas, visual cues have been applied to help families remain physically distanced, including staying at least six feet from other families. The hospital has also added extra hand sanitizing stations in common areas.
Dr. Blumstein says families can also call ahead if they have questions or concerns about their child’s health. “The health, safety and wellbeing of children are our first priority. We want families to feel comfortable with bringing their child in for this much needed care,” she said.
Remember if your child is experiencing a medical emergency, visit the nearest emergency room or call 911 immediately.
For more information about how Nicklaus Children’s has adapted its policies to continue keeping patients and families safe, visit Nicklauschildrens.org/Covid19Safety