Our Mission in the Children’s of Alabama (COA) emergency department (ED) is to provide “State of the Art” safe, efficient, cost-effective and compassionate care to all presenting acutely ill or injured children regardless of their ability to pay. It takes the convergence of patient care, research, education, and funding to ensure the finest care. The affiliation between UAB and COA enables a “best of both worlds” environment, capitalizing on the strengths of both institutions. The UAB Division of PEM strives to make substantial contributions in each academic domain (clinical, research, and education) but also is committed to providing administrative leadership, community outreach and child advocacy. The COA ED care team includes dedicated and specialized nurses, respiratory therapists, care assistants, radiology techs, child life, registration and unit clerks, social workers, security personnel, environmental service workers, information technology experts, interpreters, patient satisfaction representatives, physicians, nurse practitioners, and others. Representatives of each meet monthly to review performance, problem-solve and “redesign” care processes to improve the care we provide.
PEM faculty are fortunate to have access to consulting colleagues in every pediatric medical and most surgical subspecialties. We have 24/7 in-house PICU and CVICU attending/fellow coverage and we are the State’s only designated level 1 pediatric trauma center.
The Benjamin Russell Children’s Hospital opened in August of 2012, expanding the COA campus with a stunning 12 story facility dedicated to inpatient, ED, and surgical services. Our new ED has 53 rooms including 4 major resuscitation rooms and one specialized room for the evaluation of sexual abuse and gynecological complaints. A “trauma-vator” preferentially transports patients directly from the heliport on top of the facility to the ED. Ambulances enter the facility in close approximation to the resuscitation area. Radiology, including MR and CT are connected to the ED and just down the hallway from the resuscitation rooms. In addition the new facility includes a 4 bed unit that is “lockable” with its own nursing station and the rooms include adaptations that are implemented when a psychiatric patient is considered at risk of harm to self or others.