Disclosure :: We’re quite certain that all of you have been up late at night with a sick child at some point during your parenting journey. We, too, have been there, and we know that it can be really, really tough. Is this worth an emergency room visit? Can it wait until the morning? We are thrilled to run this post, sponsored by Children’s Hospital, about the opening of their After Hours Clinic in Metairie.
Children’s Hospital After Hours Clinic Now Open in Metairie!
Children’s Hospital After Hours Clinic will stitch them up, handle the upset tummies, the colic, the twisted knees, the bumps and bruises from discovering just how fun a bed can be as a trampoline and help you get that peace of mind back on those “can’t wait until tomorrows.”
It’s 8:00 p.m., and your 3-year-old daughter, who has had a runny nose for five days, has been cross all afternoon. She looks somewhat more tired, and her face feels warm to the touch. You measure her temperature by mouth, and it is 101.5 degrees. You give her a dose of acetaminophen, and she settles down a bit. At 10:00 p.m., you retake the temperature, and it is now 102.5 degrees. Does your child need to see a pediatrician now, or is it okay to wait for an office appointment?
Most of the time, all it takes for your pediatrician to diagnose and treat your child’s problem is to review the child’s history and present symptoms, perform a physical examination, and, in some circumstances, complete the picture with some simple lab tests. If your child would just get sick only during your pediatrician’s office hours, you would rarely need to go anywhere else for care.
But as any mom will tell you, kids tend to get sick at inconvenient times: late in the day, at night and on the weekend (it’s not your imagination!). Even when they do get sick during the day, if they’re away from you at school or daycare, it may after 5:00 p.m. before you find out that something’s wrong. And the weekend – Friday night, Saturday and Sunday – makes up over one-third of the week. Pediatrician offices are open 45 to 50 hours a week, but kids get sick 24/7/365.
Even when something goes wrong after hours, your first step is the same: call your child’s pediatrician. He or she knows you and your child and is your first and best source of help. Your pediatrician may be able to tell you whether the child needs a physician’s care now or, if not, what you can do to ease your child’s symptoms until you can get an office appointment. It’s never wrong to seek after-hours care, but your doctor can help determine whether it’s okay to wait.
When You Need After-Hours Care in the New Orleans Area: Which Option Is Right for Your Child, Right Now?
When your child needs after-hours care, where should you go? The traditional alternatives have been urgent care centers and emergency rooms, and each has its pros and cons. Urgent care centers are less expensive (in terms of both your co-payment and the insurance coverage) and often less crowded than ERs. On the downside, they are seldom staffed with pediatricians.
Emergency rooms have access to more complex technology, but most ER visits don’t require that technology. In return for the access, you may face a long and stressful wait. And, surprisingly, your child may not end up being seen by a pediatrician; even ERs that advertising as treating children don’t always have pediatricians on duty round-the-clock. The lone exception is the Children’s Hospital ER – it is staffed 24/7/365 with pediatricians.
Starting August 4th, Children’s Hospital is opening an After Hours Clinic in Metairie. Staffed by pediatricians and pediatric nurses, the clinic is open when most doctors are home getting their well-deserved rest. The staff is trained in soothing uncomfortable, frightened, and even special-needs children. The pediatricians have experience in both office and ER practice. Costs and wait times—and stress levels—are comparable to your doctor’s office, and continuity of care is a primary consideration.
When you take your child to Children’s Hospital After Hours, you can rest assured that your pediatrician will have a full report of the visit by the time he or she reaches the office the next morning.
When do you go to Children’s Hospital After Hours? When do you go to the ER? When do you see your pediatrician during normal office hours? Here are a few examples:
What You Need to Know Before You Go, Logistically Speaking!
Hours are (***updated as of July 26th 2016) ::
- Monday- Friday: 6:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.
- Saturday: 12:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.
- Sunday: 10:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Walk-ins are welcome; no appointments needed!
Phone :: (504) 837-7760
Address :: 3040 33rd Street, Metairie, LA 70001
At the foot of I-10 and Causeway by the Galleria
Pediatricians :: John Firestone, Jr., MD, Maria Treme, MD, and Karen Kern, MD
For more information check out the web site at www.chmpc.org
Dr. John Firestone, Jr.
Dr. John Firestone, Jr., is a Board-certified pediatrician and allergist who has been in practice for 28 years in the metro New Orleans area. He now works with Children’s Hospital After Hours, an after-hours pediatrician-staffed facility in Metairie.