Located on the second floor of Kalispell Regional Medical Center’s patient tower, the pediatric unit provides care for children from birth through age 18. The pediatric unit includes the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU), where we care for critically ill children and adolescents.
The pediatric acute care unit has 12 beds. Each room in the unit can accommodate children needing either general medical patient care or more intensive care. The PICU is staffed with pediatric critical care physicians, pediatric hospitalists, medical and surgical pediatric specialists, and specially trained nurses and respiratory therapists.
The pediatric floor provides multidisciplinary care for patients with common pediatric illnesses such as flu, dehydration and infections; respiratory illness; chronic illness such as asthma, diabetes, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis and seizure disorders; and recovery from general surgeries or injuries.
The PICU provides multidisciplinary care for patients with single- or multi-organ system failure, complex chronic illness, hematological and oncological illness, and recovery from complex general surgeries.
Before Coming to the Hospital
The hospital can be a scary place for children. To ease their fears, it helps to be honest about what to expect. Talk about where they are going, how long they might stay, who they might see and other kids they might meet. Let them express their concerns and fears. Talking with them about their concerns will help ease any anxiety they have.
What to Bring to the Hospital
Days in the hospital can feel long, especially for a child. We encourage bringing a few items that remind your child of home and will make him or her more comfortable. Examples include favorite blankets, stuffed animals, books and clothing.
It is important that the medical team knows what medications your child is currently taking, including name, dose, frequency and time. If you are unsure of any of these details, bring the bottles with you and our pharmacists will gladly take a look at them.
During Your Hospital Stay
Each day your child will have a nurse working with him or her. The nurse will visit the room to assess your child multiple times throughout the day. Feel free to ask the nurse questions and bring up any concerns as they arise.
The nurse will work with other members of the medical team, including respiratory therapists, doctors, dietitians, pharmacists and, depending on your child’s needs, physical, speech or occupational therapists. This team works together to assist your child in his or her recovery. Each day at 9 a.m. the medical team rounds outside the patients’ rooms, and parents and patients are welcome to attend.
Each pediatric room has a couch bed and sleep chair for a parent or caregiver to spend the night. A bathroom with shower is available in the unit so that parents can stay close to their child.
A waiting room with child-friendly toys is connected to the unit, so families and visitors can take breaks but still be close to the patient area.
Visitors and Overnight Guests
Due to the increase of pediatric respiratory illnesses in the community, as of January 4, 2017, visitor restrictions are now in effect. Children age 12 and under are not allowed to visit the pediatric unit until further notice.
We encourage visitors, based on each patient’s condition. Talk with the nurse about what is best for your child.
The pediatric unit’s visitation policy allows four visitors per room between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m., and two overnight guests, age 18 or older, between 9 p.m. and 9 a.m. We cannot accommodate overnight guests under the age of 18.
For the health and safety of our young patients, fresh flowers and latex balloons are not allowed. Friends and family should refrain from visiting if they are ill or have recently been ill.
Before discharge, your medical team will talk with you and create a plan to make sure that you and your child are ready to succeed at home. We will provide follow-up appointments, prescriptions and discharge instructions. If your child falls within Montana regulations for needing a car seat
, please make sure you have one. The hospital cannot discharge your child if they require a car seat but do not have one.