In this section
It is impossible for us to give you an accurate wait time. There may
be many children requiring urgent treatment, and some children require
treatment that takes longer than others. A child’s treatment can’t be
rushed so we thank you for your patience and consideration; we are doing our
best to see you
in the shortest possible time.
If you feel your child’s condition
changes or pain increases, tell the triage nurse at the triage support desk.
If you choose not to wait for treatment or need to leave the waiting
area for any reason, please see the triage nurse or clerical desk before you leave.
See our current Emergency Department status.
The most seriously ill and
critically injured children will always be seen first. This is regardless of
when they arrived or how they arrived (by ambulance, walk-in or sent by another
The ED is a very busy place with
lots happening behind the scenes.
The emergency department has a
team of over 200 staff with varied qualifications and specialties. Your child
may be seen by a Senior Doctor, Junior Doctor, Nurse Practitioner or Registered
Nurse. Depending on why your child has presented to the emergency department,
they will be treated by an appropriate clinician from one of our teams.
Our team of nurse
practitioners are highly experienced emergency nurses, qualified to
assess patients, provide treatment and discharge or refer patients
without being seen by a doctor.
The ED is staffed by residents, registrars and emergency specialists.
Residents and registrars are qualified doctors who are completing
further training. They are supervised by senior doctors who are
specialists in managing paediatric emergencies. The
doctors work with the nurses and other staff to provide the best
care for your child. You may meet a number of doctors during your stay in ED. If you are
admitted, you will also see doctors from the inpatient teams.
As part of The RCH Allied Health
team, one or more of the following Allied Health staff may visit to support
your child’s treatment such as social workers, mental health clinicians,
educational play therapists and radiographers.
There is also an after-hours GP
practice that operates within the department, your child may fit the criteria to
be seen by the GP and will be called by the clinic receptionist in the waiting
room. Please note that it is at the clinics discretion which cases they see as
guided by the triage nurse.
Entry to the Emergency Department is via entry 2
from Flemington Road, Parkville. There is a small number of 15min public drop
off car parking bays available at the entrance to the department, these are for
the facilitation of dropping off children & their carer only; parking is
available in the carpark adjacent to the emergency department or along
Flemington Road as signed.
Cars left in the drop-off area may receive fines or
be towed away at the councils discretion.
Currently, only a parent or legal
guardian can accompany the child whilst in ED. Refer to the visitor policy for
the most up to date information.
Extended family and siblings are
not permitted to attend the ED at present; once a child is admitted to a ward
then it is appropriate to welcome visitors (see individual ward for applicable
If your child needs a longer stay or more complex treatment, they will be admitted to our short stay ward, an inpatient ward or the intensive care unit. Your child will be transferred to a ward as soon as a bed is available (this wait can sometimes be several hours).
Your child may need a surgical procedure. Surgery usually means fasting (nothing to eat or drink) and being taken to the operating theatres on level 3. You will meet your child’s surgeon, anesthetist and the theatre staff, who will explain in detail what will happen.
When your child wakes up after the operation, they will stay in the recovery room close to the operating theatres for a length of time. Once they are awake and as comfortable as they can be, they may be transferred to one of the wards or discharged home, depending on the
type of procedure.
When your child comes to Emergency, they will have an ID band attached around their wrist or ankle. The information on the band includes the patient’s name, date of birth, their unique RCH record number (or UR number), and a barcode. A red ID band indicates
your child needs an additional alert regarding allergies. Many different nursing, medical and allied health staff may care for your child throughout their stay and will routinely scan your child’s ID band to confirm the patient’s information.
It is essential to wear an ID band at all times, so please speak with nursing staff if your child does not have one.