January 13, 2021
Mom, Christine, shares her experience taking her son to the emergency room during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in this Q&A. She encourages other parents and guardians not to wait if their child needs care.
HealthU: Tell us about your journey.
Christine: My son, who is 10 years old, was not feeling well for a couple of weeks with symptoms of a headache, stomach pain and sore throat. We visited our pediatrician and ear, nose and throat doctor to rule out strep, and other viral or bacterial infections. One morning, however, he awoke with a severe headache and I realized that he was in need of emergency care. I took him to the emergency room at Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital.
HealthU: What was your biggest concern?
Christine: My biggest concern was COVID and exposing him to further germs that could potentially make him sicker. When we arrived at the emergency room, he was actually the only patient in the waiting room. He was immediately triaged and then taken into a private room for further evaluation by a physician. Everyone was extremely cautious. They wore masks, gowns, face shields and gloves. The housekeeping personnel was also present disinfecting rooms, equipment, etc. That was very reassuring.
HealthU: What do you want other parents to know?
Christine: I was very apprehensive about bringing my child to the ER during COVID; however, I realized that my child needed emergency care. Witnessing the level of caution and compassion by the staff was reassuring that my child was going to be fine and my decision to bring him to the ER was the correct decision. The moral of the story, if you are on the fence as to whether you should go or not, jump over the fence and go. I am glad I did.
HealthU: What was the outcome and/or diagnosis of your visit?
Christine: The headache’s origin was not found, but immediate concerns were responded to. At discharge, the emergency team recommended that we follow up with a neurologist, which we did. We went for an MRI of the brain and sought a consult from a pediatric gastroenterologist (because his stomach symptoms persisted). The ultimate diagnosis was gluten sensitivity. We stopped all gluten immediately and he has been doing great.
Next Steps & Resources:
- To make an appointment with a pediatrician or pediatric specialist near you, call 800-822-8905 or visit our website.
- Flu or COVID-19? How to Tell the Difference in Kids
- Kids and COVID-19: Here’s What We Know
- Seeing a Pediatrician During COVID-19: Cooper’s Story
- Should I Take My Child to the Pediatrician During the Pandemic?
The material provided through HealthU is intended to be used as general information only and should not replace the advice of your physician. Always consult your physician for individual care.