3 Things You Need to Respond to a Pediatric Medical Emergency

pediatric patient at dentist

National Children’s Dental Health Month is a great time to connect with young patients about developing their oral health skills.  This annual observation also presents an opportunity to make sure you’re prepared to support the specific needs of children in the unexpected event of a pediatric medical emergency.

Pediatric medical response largely follows the protocols—and uses much the same equipment—as for adults.  You can learn more about general medical emergency preparedness through this infographic and through emergency kit training courses.

Different Needs for Pediatric Medical Emergency Response

Primarily because they are smaller than adults, children should receive medical response that uses specialized supplies and administration.  Make sure your dental office is ready as follows:

For airway and resuscitation

  • Pediatric-sized IV gauges
  • Separate infant and pediatric bag-valve-masks and face masks. While a manually triggered oxygen resuscitator is a positive pressure option for administration to adults, it can deliver an overwhelming tidal volume to pediatric patients and smaller adults. Use a portable cylinder with a child-sized oxygen bag-valve-mask instead.

For allergic reactions

  • Use a pediatric-dose epinephrine auto injector, which delivers 0.15mg rather than the standard adult dose of 0.3mg.

Medication dosing

Determining the correct dose in a medical emergency is less challenging when you use a digital tool.  For example, the SafeDose® application ensures you are delivering the correct dose of any medication based on the patient’s weight.

SafeDose one of the benefits of the HealthFirst Practice Partner program, a new way to manage emergency readiness.


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