High Quality Emergency Care for Children Optimal Global Care of Children in Acute Care Settings A White Paper from the Paediatric Emergency Medicine Special Interest Group of IFEM

Emergency Medicine (EM) is the medical speciality that assesses and manages patients of any age with sudden onset of illnesses or injuries. There are important differences in one’s approach to care of children when compared with adults. Providing excellent clinical care to children in this context deserves special mention.  Children deserve standards of care that are no less than those provided for adult patients. To provide this care, basic amendments in staff training and in the layout and equipment of hospitals receiving paediatric patients are important to cover children’s needs. Optimizing outcomes for children from Emergency Departments throughout the world will contribute to the foundation of a healthy society and reduce economic impact of illness and injury. 

Some countries have established general emergency medicine systems and training programs with specific paediatric emergency medicine (PEM) components, whilst other countries have advanced PEM systems and training programs, which prepare providers to address these differences. However, in many other hospitals around the world, staff may not have the training or resources at their site to provide even a minimum good standard of care for children (1). Addressing these differences will contribute to better health outcomes.