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Emergency Department Paediatric Readiness

BACKGROUND

Children requiring emergency care have unique needs that are typically very different than those of adult patients, especially when the need for care is serious or life-threatening in nature. Paediatric readiness among Emergency Departments (EDs) is critical to providing quality care for paediatric patients. As such, the Provincial Council for Maternal and Child Health (PCMCH), in partnership with TRanslating Emergency Knowledge for Kids (TREKK), has been leading the Emergency Department Paediatric Readiness (PED Readiness) initiative. This initiative includes the development and launch of an online readiness checklist, a recognized and validated tool which consists of a series of questions based on national guidelines.

PCMCH’s work leverages two federally funded initiatives in the United States: Emergency Medical Services for Children (EMSC) Program and the National Paediatric Readiness Project (NPRP) survey.

ABOUT THE EMERGENCY DEPARTMENT PAEDIATRIC READINESS CHECKLIST

The readiness survey (commonly referred to as “readiness checklist”), is a survey that is comprised of approximately 170 medical health and mental health related questions across the following domains:

  1. Demographics/Infrastructure
  2. Coordination of Patient Care
  3. ED Staffing and Training
  4. Quality Improvement & Patient Safety
  5. Policies and Procedures
  6. Paediatric Equipment or Supplies
  7. Challenges/Enablers

The checklist is not prescriptive, nor does it instruct hospitals about what must be in place in order to see paediatric patients within their EDs. Instead, it provides an important mechanism for determining baselines and progress in emergency department paediatric readiness, and for identifying and driving improvements within organizations, regions and the larger provincial system of care.

In February 2021 each hospital site will be sent a unique link to submit their readiness checklist. Participating hospitals will receive a customized report after the completion of the readiness checklist, which will contain information about their hospital’s paediatric readiness, and will compare the hospital against the average of like-sized hospitals and any areas for improvement.

NEXT STEPS

This data will help identify and drive improvements within organization(s) and the larger system of care. The data collected from this survey will be used to help provide baseline data for quality improvement and monitor the provincial system’s progress in paediatric readiness. The data from this survey may be shared with other system partners for system monitoring and planning purposes. The survey will be administered every 4-5 years to highlight progress and areas for improvement. Participating hospitals will receive a report that compares their own hospital site’s scores against the average of like-sized hospitals, and will identify any areas for improvement.

QUESTIONS?

Please contact ED.Readiness@pcmch.on.ca about this initiative.