Here for families: Pediatric care in the midst of a pandemic
We know parents and caregivers are really scared. But providers are still here, ready to help you care for your child. If your child is sick or injured, or struggling emotionally, pick up the phone and call your pediatrician. We are working hard to make sure we can care for your child, while still keeping everyone safe.
- Newborn visits after a baby is born.
- Staying up-to-date on immunizations.
- Hearing and vision screenings.
- Monitoring growth, blood pressure, and other vital signs.
- Following up on test results, such as for anemia.
- Checking on developmental milestones.
- Treating infections or injuries.
- Adolescent health concerns, such as menstrual care and depression.
We are open for appointments
We are seeing children to treat their illnesses and to keep them healthy today and every day. Extra steps are being taken to make sure you and your children are safe when you come in for a visit.
Here are some of the things we are doing to ensure everyone’s safety:
- Screening for all staff, patients, and visitors
All patients and staff are screened before entering our clinics and hospital. Anyone with a fever, cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of COVID-19, should talk with our nurses before coming in for an appointment, so we can direct you to the best site for your care.
- Limiting visitors
We ask that each child come to our clinic with only one parent, and that all other family members stay at home when possible or wait in their cars (please do not leave any children unattended). This decreases infection risk to others.
- Universal masking
For the safety of everyone, all patients, visitors and staff on our campus and in our clinics need to wear a mask. All clinic staff will be wearing face masks and eye shields. Please let your child know that they might not be able to see it, but we are all still smiling at them beneath our masks! To keep our staff safe, we ask you and children over 2 years to wear masks, too. We will provide masks for you if you do not have one to bring from home.
- Safe social distancing
Our waiting rooms are now set up so that everyone can be at least 6 feet apart, the CDC recommended guidance whenever possible. After registering at the desk, it is our goal to bring you and your child into an exam room as quickly as possible.
- Hand washing
All patients and visitors are encouraged to wash their hands or use hand sanitizer frequently. For our staff, it is required.
- Cleaning and disinfecting
We are cleaning all clinic spaces with even greater frequency than usual. Every exam room and all equipment is disinfected between each patient.
- Separate areas for well and sick patients
Children with fever and respiratory illnesses are seen by our pediatricians and pediatric nurses in a special and separate clinic. Adults who may have the same symptoms can also be seen at the same separate clinic location. In our regular pediatric clinic, we separate areas for children being seen for ill visits (like headache, upset stomach, etc) and well visits. Call ahead if you have questions, so we make sure to guide you to the right spot!
- Video and phone visits
For some appointments, we now offer phone or video visits. If you are interested in this, please call us to see if this is right for your child or teen. Our staff can help set you up for video visits, and our interpreters are available to help with visits. We have heard from our patients that these visits can be fun and very useful. .
What to do if your child is sick
If your child has been exposed to COVID-19, or you are concerned about your child’s symptoms, call your pediatrician immediately.
Sometimes it’s hard to tell how sick your child is. Luckily, a trip to the hospital is usually not needed for a simple cold or cough, mild diarrhea, constipation, temper tantrums, or sleep problems. Call your pediatrician for any concerns you may have about your child’s health.
If you feel you need to call 911, trust your instincts and call. Otherwise, it’s generally a good idea to check in with your pediatrician first. Sometimes they can help over the phone or will help coordinate other kinds of care for your child without going to the hospital.
Most of all, do not avoid calling your pediatrician or worry that a trip to the clinic or hospital will put you or your child at higher risk for COVID-19. Doctor’s offices and emergency departments are still seeing and treating patients and are following all recommended steps to keep patients and families safe.
See the article, When to Call Emergency Medical Services for more information about what to do in an emergency.
Below are resources that can help your family during this crisis:
- Information for families of children and youth with special health care needs
- COVID-19 & Mental Health: Signs your teen may need more support
- COVID-19 and multi-system inflammatory syndrome in children
- Cloth face coverings for children
- Getting children outside while social distancing
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