As a parent it is always a difficult time when your child is unwell. Mixing with other children and sharing toys exposes them to all sorts of germs. So it can be hard to know when to visit your doctor or when to go straight to an emergency department. We’ve put together some information on where you can go if your child is unwell.
Trust your Instincts
The rule of thumb is that if your instincts are saying something is really wrong then you should not hesitate to call 999. But for more minor emergencies then calling 111 first is a great first step. This is the free NHS telephone line for urgent medical problems. The helpful staff will be able to advise in the first instance on what you can do or where you can take your child.
There is the option of urgent care centre’s or they could advise which hospital is best for your child. But again if you feel the situation is life threatening then 999 is always the best option to choose.
When Should I go to the GP?
·If you child has been suffering a medical problem for more than 48 hours
·An illness or injury that won’t go away (including vomiting, ear pain, spots)
If in doubt do call your doctor surgery. They may advise you to book an appointment or take your child to the Urgent Care Centre.
If your GP surgery is closed then their telephone answer phone service should give you the next options.
Common illnesses like colds and stomach bugs are usually healed at home with lots of rest but if they don’t go or the situation worsens then it’s time to get help.
If you cannot control your child’s temperature with Calpol, if you have a really young baby or you are really worried about other symptoms, then do seek advice from a Doctor or the emergency department.