Pediatric Emergency Medicine


Your Child's ED Visit »

Arrival, Parking & Security »

Guest Services »

Registration »

Triage »

Pediatric Waiting Room »

Treatment Room »

Discharge »

Admission »

Transfers »

Ouchless ED »

Child Life Specialist »

Social Work & Case Management »

Guest Services »

Interpreter & Sign Language Services »

Miscellaneous »

Dining »

Lodging »

Free Wifi »

iPads »

Valet Parking »

Visiting Guests »



Your Child's ED Visit

Arrival, Parking & Security

Arrival & Parking:

As you approach the Stanford Hospital you will find blue signs directing you to the Emergency Department. Please note, that the entrance to the ER is located at the back of the hospital where the ambulances go, not the front of the hospital where the fountains are.
Also, don't drive to Lucile Packard Children's Hospital on Welch Road. They do not offer emergency services.

Pull up to the Emergency Department Entrance. Ask for help and further directions. Our security team will assist you.

You can leave your car for a limited time in the emergency parking lot. Valet parking is available for $8 from 8 AM to 8 PM seven days a week.

Metered parking is available in the parking structure across the street from the Emergency Department Entrance. After 4 PM, parking is free in the same structure.

If you have to stay with your child in the Pediatric ED for an extended period of time, ask your nurse for a complementary parking pass.


You enter the Emergency Department through security. All patients and family members will have to be screened. We apologize for this inconvenience, but we want you and your family to feel secure when you are our guests. You might be asked to show the content of your bag and will be screened through a metal detector.

The security person will ask if you or your child would like to be seen and evaluated in the ED. They will hand you a piece of paper to fill out with some very basic information.
In a life threatening emergency (unconscious person, severe breathing problems, active bleeding wound for example), security will take you back to the triage area from where you will be taken immediately to a treatment room. Registration and Triage is bypassed.

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Guest Services

When you enter the waiting room, you can ask for further assistance at the Guest Services desk. They are happy to answer all your questions and will direct you to the registration window.

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The next step is registration. We call it "Quick Reg" as it only involves a few basic questions in order for you or your child to show up in our computer system. This should not take more than a few minutes. Later, someone from registration will get additional information from you.

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Next you will be seen by a nurse for a "Quick Triage" evaluation. Again, this should only take a few minutes. The nurse will ask you about the main symptoms and reason for your visit. Then a set of vital signs is taken and you are asked about level of pain, your medications and any allergies we need to be aware of. With this information the triage nurse assigns you a treatment level. We call it the Emergency Severity Index (ESI). There are 5 levels ranging from acute life threatening (ESI 1) to routine (ESI 5). We take the chief complaint, vital signs and how many resources are needed to calculate the ESI score.

Naturally, the more acute your condition, the faster you will be evaluated. While at your doctor's office or in a clinic you are seen on a "first come, first serve" basis, we "triage" and evaluate patients based on their level of medical emergency.

If your child has a fever or a painful condition, the nurse will administer the first dose of Acetaminophen (Tylenol) or Ibuprofen (Motrim) in the triage area.

If a blood draw or IV is later necessary, the nurse will also place a numbing cream on your child's arm. This cream takes about 40 minutes to anesthetize the skin.

If a treatment room is open you will be taken directly to the exam room and your doctor will see you there.

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Pediatric Waiting Area

If all treatment rooms are filled, you and your child might be temporarily taken to the Pediatric Waiting room. Sometimes a nurse or a doctor will see you there and start asking more questions. This will allow us to order necessary tests and help reduce the length of your stay. For example a X-ray might be ordered or anti-nausea medication might be given.

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Treatment Room

After you are taken to the treatment room, the Pediatric ED nurse might check your child's vital signs again and ask for additional information. Most of our rooms are private but we also have a larger resuscitation room where 2 beds share one treatment area.

Your child will be seen by one of our physicians. As Stanford University is a teaching facility this could be a "Resident" physician or the supervising "Attending" physician. A more thorough H&P (History and Physical) will follow and any treatments or required tests are discussed with you. This is a good time to get all your questions answered.

Medications are administered by the nurses who will also draw blood for lab tests, collect urine or start an IV. Lab tests take about 60-90 minutes to come back. The turnaround time for X-Rays, ultrasound and cat scan studies varies from 15 minutes to several hours as sometimes there is a preparation period needed. Some ultrasounds require a full bladder, some cat scans require that first oral contrast is ingested. Please don't hesitate to ask your nurse or our unit secretary for an update.

After the tests results have returned, the physician will discuss the next steps with you. At this time your child might need a consultation from one of the Children's Hospital specialists or require additional tests. Later, your child will be discharged or admitted to the hospital for further treatment.

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Again, this is a good time to get all your questions answered.

The nurse will go over the diagnosis, explain what medications are prescribed, talk about follow up care and when to come back to the ED if your child is not feeling better.

Medications can be faxed to your pharmacy so they are ready for pickup. Some medications require a special prescription which will be handed to you by the nurse. During after hour times we give the first dose of a medication in the ED, so you don't have to find a 24 hour pharmacy in the middle of the night.

Good follow-up care is very important. If you have a private pediatrician we will automatically fax them the most important information about your visit. If a referral is needed for one of our LPCH specialty clinics we will send the information the next day to the LPCH Patient Referral Center.

If you still have questions later, our Emergency Department Call Back Nurses are available every day from 9A-9P at (650) 723-4411. They might also call you to see how your child is doing, if all follow up appointments have been arranged and in general can help you with many other unanswered questions.

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If your child needs to be admitted, your ED physician will call the Children's Hospital admitting doctors and transfer over the care to them. The admitting doctors will either come to the ED or see you later on the floor after the admission. At the present time we have two admitting facilities: Lucile Packard Children's Hospital (located next to Stanford Hospital) and Pediatrics at El Camino Hospital (PEC) about 10 miles south. Both are staffed by LPCH physicians and nurses and both offer a wide variety of services specifically tailored to the needs of your child. The physician will discuss with you the most appropriate facility. If your child is admitted to PEC we will arrange the transfer for you. We either use our LPCH transfer team or an ambulance. There are no additional costs for you for this service.

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Although LPCH offers a wide range of services, there are circumstances when a child has to be sent to another facility. For example burn injuries are managed by a specialty burn center at Valley Medical Center in San Jose. Sometimes our hospital has no admitting beds for many hours. Under these circumstances we recommend a transfer to another facility so your child gets the appropriate treatment without long delays. These are the exceptions as we always will try to accommodate you at our facility first.

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Ouchless ED

We are experts in treating pain.

Drawing blood and giving a shot hurts and setting a broken bone hurts even more. We apply a range of interventions to reduce this trauma for your child at every step of the way. Topical skin anesthetics and icing sprays before blood draws and the use of skin adhesives instead of sutures are just the beginning. Intranasally administered pain medications and the safest procedural anesthesia allow us to reduce the pain and associated anxiety for your child. If your child is uncomfortable or in pain, don't hesitate to inform your nurse or doctor about it. They will be happy to re-evaluate your child and give pain medications.

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Child Life Specialist

Play and distraction can reduce the stress a child feels when they are in the Emergency Department. We have a Child Life Specialist who can provide education, support, and distraction for procedures common to the Emergency Department. The Child Life Specialist is trained to explain procedures, tests and diagnosis to children depending on their developmental age. Toys and developmentally appropriate activities are available both in the waiting area as well as in the examination rooms to help keep children and families comfortable. If you have any questions regarding this service please feel free to ask for the Child Life Specialist.

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Social Work & Case Management

The Social Work and Case Management Department responds to referrals for inpatient and clinic patients at Stanford Hospital & Clinics.

Case Managers assist patients and their families with discharge planning and insurance issues.  Social Workers focus on providing short term counseling and community resources. The Department of Social Work and Case Management is committed to:

Providing discharge planning
Assistance and referrals to lodging resources
Supportive and adjustment counseling
Crisis intervention
Utilization management in support of our internal and external customers.
Services & Responsibilities
Discharge Planning
Utilization Management
Insurance Questions
Medicare and Social Security information
Medi-Cal information
State Disability information
Case Coordination
Psychosocial evaluations and treatment planning
Supportive and adjustment counseling
Advanced Directives
Crisis intervention
Provision of concrete services
Hotels, Motels and Extended Stay
Financial assessment and referral services
Support Groups
Abuse assessment and reporting
Education and consultative services

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Guest Services

We are very happy to offer our concierge Guest Service. Stanford Hospital Guest Services provides personal assistance, support, and resources for patients and guests. Complementing the Hospital's renowned medical care, they are here to focus on your unique needs, before, during, and after your visit. Ask your nurse to call them to talk to you.

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Interpreter & Sign Language Services

Interpreters will be provided at your request (including sign language). Please ask your nurse to page the interpreter on call. If you do not wish to use Stanford's interpreter you may use one of your choice at your own expense.

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If parents want to visit the cafeteria please notify your child's nurse before you leave the Emergency Department.


Market Square Cafeteria
The hospital's main cafeteria is located on the first floor near the Garden Entrance.  Market Square offers hot entrees, sandwiches, made-to-order hamburgers and grill items, soups, soft-serve ice cream and a salad and fruit bar. 
Open 7:00 am - 7:00 pm daily.

Starbucks/Mrs. Fields Kiosk
Located adjacent to the Market Square Cafeteria, the kiosk offers gourmet coffee drinks and teas, as well as sandwiches, breakfast items, and sweets. 
Open 6:00 am - 2:30 am, Monday - Friday. 
Open 7:30 am - 2:30 am, Saturday - Sunday and holidays.

Bing Dining Room
A full-service restaurant located on the third floor of the hospital by the escalators.  It is open to patients and guests from 11:30 am - 2 pm, Monday - Friday.  Reservations are recommended, call 650-725-7840.  Walk-ins are welcome after 1 pm. 

Cafe Salute
Light meals, homemade soups, and snacks made using fresh, organic meats and produce are offered on the first floor of the Cancer Center. 
Open 7:00 am - 5:30 pm, Monday - Friday.

The Courtyard Cafe
Located on the ground floor of Lucile Packard Children's Hospital, the cafe offers hot entrees, sandwiches, salads, and beverages. 
Open 7:00 am - 7:00 pm, Monday - Friday. 
Open 7:00 am - 3:00 pm, Saturday - Sunday and holidays.

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Housing Assistance:
Lucile Packard Children's Hospital has created a housing hotline, (650) 498-7971, to assist out-of-town families arrange for accommodations close to the hospital.  Lodging information and placement services are available whether your family needs a single night of lodging or many months.

The Housing Office is staffed Monday through Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. PST.  The office is closed weekends and all holidays. Calls to the Housing Office during off-hours are returned the next business day.

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Free Wifi

When you are in the Pediatric ED you can use our free WiFi service. You can bring your own laptop, smart phone or tablet computer to go online, check your email or stay in touch with loved ones at home.

The password is: 596Ne


Launched in September 2012, iPads are now available for any visitor to the Pediatric Emergency Department who is in a patient room. Simply provide your drivers license to borrow the iPad, and you can stream movies, listen to music, video conference or SMS with Stanford health professionals, surf the internet, or visit our website during your stay.

Learn More About Our New iPads

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Valet Parking

Valet parking is available for $8 from 8 AM to 8 PM seven days a week.
Metered parking is available in the parking structure across the street from the Emergency Department Entrance. After 4 PM, parking is free in the same structure.

If you have to stay with your child in the Pediatric ED for an extended period of time, ask your nurse for a complementary parking pass.

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Visiting Guests

We believe that children should be close to their family at all times. However due to the physical constraints of our rooms we prefer to limit it to 2 adults. Brief visits by siblings can be allowed. Longer stays by siblings are not encouraged for infection control reasons and interference with the work flow of the staff. We understand there can be circumstances when siblings have to stay with the parent in our Pediatric ED. Please ask your nurse, social worker, guest services or child life specialist to help you with transportation, phone calls, referrals or help to contact family members.

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