[Skip to Navigation]
January 1968

Pediatric Emergency Room Patient: A Comparison of Patients Seen During the Day and at Night

Author Affiliations

Los Angeles
From the departments of pediatrics (Drs. Wingert and Friedman) and psychiatry (Dr. Larson), and the Medical Data Research Center (Dr. Larson), University of Southern California, and the Pediatric Outpatient Department (Drs. Wingert and Friedman) of Los Angeles County General Hospital, Los Angeles.

Am J Dis Child. 1968;115(1):48-56. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1968.02100010050009

A PEDIATRIC Emergency Room and Outpatient Department faces the problem of providing immediate and optimal medical and surgical care both day and night for an annually increasing volume of ill children. The director of such services is responsible for allocating an adequate number of physicians and nurses to those periods in the day when medical service demands are greatest. A knowledge of the hours of peak load, not only in numbers of patients but also in type and severity of illness, is valuable since the treatment of certain illnesses, such as diabetic coma, trauma, poisoning, and advanced dehydration is time-consuming and requires experienced personnel. Obviously, increased numbers of well-trained mature physicians and nurses should be assigned during critical periods.

How does the individual parent's position in society, family structure, or previous experience with physicians or medical care facilities affect the hour he chooses to seek medical care for his child?