Pediatric ERs: Designed to care for your child

You hope your child never gets hurt or severely ill. But about 22 million patients ages 19 and younger are treated in emergency rooms (ERs) every year.

ERs designed for young patients are called pediatric ERs. They offer many benefits for children that you might not find at a traditional ER.

Specially trained ER staff

“Doctors and other staff members in the pediatric ER are specially trained to work with children, families and caregivers,” says Andrew Hertz, MD, Vice President and Medical Director of the UH Rainbow Care Network.

You will see pediatric specialists, including physicians, nurses, social workers and respiratory therapists. They are skilled at:

  • Explaining what is happening to your child during treatment
  • Considering your child’s developmental and growth status, which causes him or her to react differently than an adult would
  • Providing instructions on how to care for your child when you get home
  • Assessing the unique treatment needs of children and teenagers. “Some treatments for adults are not appropriate for kids,” says Dr. Hertz. “And medical research done with adults may not apply to the unique needs of children.”

Comfortable care

Crowded adult ERs can be a scary atmosphere for young patients. But, Dr. Hertz says, “Pediatric ERs are accustomed to treating the conditions and ailments typical of children and teenagers in a child-friendly environment.” And, he adds, if your child needs to be admitted to the hospital after visiting the ER, pediatric ERs are linked to pediatric hospitals, streamlining your child’s care.

When urgent care is a smart option

“If treatment is needed right away for a less serious problem and your child’s doctor’s office is closed, an urgent care center is your best bet,” says Dr. Hertz.

According to Dr. Hertz, examples of these types of medical issues include:

  • Minor sports injuries
  • Minor cuts and burns
  • Ear infections
  • Sore throats
  • Urinary symptoms

Urgent care centers usually do not require appointments, are open later than normal business hours and typically provide faster, more affordable care compared with ERs. However, Dr. Hertz advises, just as with an ER, parents should seek out an urgent care center that provides special care for children.

Wait from home with FREE online service

InQuicker allows patients with nonlife-threatening conditions to go online and hold their place in line from home for ER services. Visit to learn more.

Pediatric urgent and emergency care locations

UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital provides urgent and emergency care services for kids, right in your neighborhood.

Andrew Hertz

Andrew Hertz, MD
Vice President and Medical Director,
UH Rainbow Care Network
Clinical Assistant Professor,
Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine

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