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Pediatric Tele-Resuscitation Program

The Pediatric Tele-Resuscitation (Peds Tele-Resus) Program is a service for community hospitals where they can immediately access the pediatric experts in the emergency department (ED) at McMaster Children’s Hospital (MCH) through a virtual platform when children need it most. This service is meant to compliment community hospitals’ existing pediatric health care teams by providing a consult service to their physicians when a child or youth under 18 requires emergent or life-saving care.

The Peds Tele-Resus Program provides consultative support to community hospitals where the pediatric patient is receiving active care through a virtual platform. Examples of cases where a Peds Tele-Resus call is activated are:

  • Seizure
  • Altered level of consciousness
  • Fever; sepsis
  • Cardiac arrest
  • Respiratory arrest/distress
  • Trauma

Types of consultative support include:

  • Airway, breathing and circulation management
  • Emergency medication advice
  • IV fluid and blood product support
  • Invasive procedures
  • Investigations
  • Vascular access
  • Disposition advice
  • General emergent management
  • Support in ceasing active management of a patient with no vital signs

List of participating sites

St. Catharines Hospital

Greater Niagara General Hospital

Welland County General Hospital

Douglas Memorial Hospital

Port Colborne Hospital

Becoming a Peds Tele-Resus Referring Site

To become a Peds Tele-Resus Referring Site, please contact the Clinical Manager, Emergency Department, McMaster Children’s Hospital.

Contact Name: Siobhan McEwen, mcewens@HHSC.CA.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What if we already have pediatric support in our hospital, such as an on-site pediatrician?
    The purpose of the Peds Tele-Resus program is to not replace your existing resources. This program is to be a compliment to your current model of care in your ED and to be accessible to your ED physicians and/ or pediatricians in circumstances where you need additional support or advice for ED pediatric patients.
  2. Is the Peds Tele-Resus Program only available in the ED?
    Yes, the Peds Tele-Resus program is currently only available for ED to ED as the funding provided for this program was intended for ED improvement initiatives. We will continue to work with sites to understand additional needs outside of their ED.
  3. Can we streamline a Peds Tele-Resus call into one activation if CritiCall Ontario support is required?
    From our experience, the majority of calls do not require a CritiCall Ontario activation and are ground transfers via EMS. The benefit of having the Peds Tele-Resus program available at referring sites is the immediate access to a pediatric emergency medicine (PEM) physician from MCH right in your ED. The Peds Tele-Resus program is activated before CritiCall Ontario to help bridge the gap between a pediatric patient’s arrival to a community hospital’s ED, stabilization and plan. If a transfer is required, a CritiCall Ontario activation is to be placed separately.
  4. All sites will have their own medication protocols, concentrations and drug libraries. Do referring sites go by Peds Tele-Resus Program recommendations or by their own protocols?
    MCH PEM physicians use weight-based dosing and rates if required during the consult. Referring sites will follow their own policies and drug monographs.
  5. What if a referring site has a device issues?
    It is the referring site’s responsibility to troubleshoot and maintain the device. The site should work closely with their IT department to ensure the device is always available for a Peds Tele-Resus call.

Resources for Families and Caregivers

The Peds Tele-Resus Program engaged with the Family Advisory Committee at MCH to help guide referring sites when engaging with families and/or caregivers of the patients who may need a Peds Tele-Resus call placed. Family Advisory Committee members shared the following suggestions for referring sites:

  • Share that the program is in partnership with pediatric emergency experts at MCH
  • Normalize the use of the program with families and advise them that this is the safest way to get immediate pediatric emergency expert advice for their child.
  • Utilize the words “consult” and “support” when asked the purpose of the call
  • Advocate for family members and/or caregivers to be present during the acute care/management of their child; if available, have another staff member be present as support for family members/caregivers.

This downloadable poster has been created for referring sites to post in their emergency departments.

Program Leadership and Contact Information

For any inquiries related to the Peds Tele-Resus Program, please contact our leadership team:

Yelena Potts, Director, Child and Youth Acute Healthcare, pottsye@HHSC.CA

Siobhan McEwen, Clinical Manager, mcewens@HHSC.CA

Dr. Jessica Gantz, Physician Lead, gantzj@mcmaster.ca

Resources

Useful Resources for Community Hospitals:

Educational Opportunities for Community Hospitals: