Children's Emergency Department

About Children's ED

Welcome to the Children's Emergency Department
The Paediatric Emergency department (ED) of the National Children’s Hospital, Tallaght, is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

We offer specialist paediatric emergency care to children needing emergency medical, trauma or surgical care. We see all children from birth to the eve of their 16th birthday. Our specially trained nurses and doctors treat over 32,000 children each year.

Our Mission statement
Our team of nurses, doctors and reception staff are here to provide emergency care and to look after patients and their families. We will provide this care on a 24 hour basis whenever a patient comes to see us, whether that is day or night.

We will work hard to deliver timely and expert care in partnership wity your GP, Public Health Nurse and other healthcare professionals. We are a department that promotes and encourages research and education. We are a department that promotes health and wellbeing for our patients and ourselves.

The Paediatric Emergency Department is affiliated to Trinity College and you will meet our nursing and medical students during your visit with us. We are also responsible for the training of future GP's, Paediatricians, Advanced Nurse Practitioners, Paramedics and emergency medicine specialists. These doctors and nurses will be looking after you when you arrive supported by our permanent specialist nursing and medical staff. Like all busy University Hospitals we are actively involved in audit and research with national and international affiliations.

Patient Information

The staff of the Emergency Department are here to provide the best care for your child and we will see your child as soon as we can. We understand that it is difficult for you and your child to have to wait when they are unwell; unfortunately delays are sometimes unavoidable because of the number of children requiring attention. We appreciate your cooperation during these times and please be assured that each child will be seen as soon as possible.

At all times a parent or guardian should remain with his or her child. If you need to visit the ED with a child that is unwell please arrange for a family member or a friend to care for other children, do not leave other children at home on their own. For infection control reasons if possible only bring the child that is unwell to the ED for treatment.

To make your attendance as easy as possible, we have compiled some information that you may need to know during your time in the Department.

Arriving at the Children's Emergency Department

Registration Desk

All patients must first register at the Registration Desk and give details such as name, date of birth, address etc. Please note that an Emergency Department charge of €100 is payable for a visit to the department, unless you have a referral leter from a registered medical practitioner or are the holder of a valid medical card Read More


Following this you will be directed to the waiting room where the Triage Nurse will call you. Your child will then be assessed by a paediatric nurse using the Irish Children's Triage System (ICTS). Children are seen in order or priority not in order of arrival so that the sickest children are seen first. After triage you may be taken to a cubicle or asked to wait in the waiting room until the doctor calls you. If the triage nurse gives you any specific information, like not to eat or drink, please ensure you follow these instructions.

Waiting room

- Listen out for your child's name to be called.
- If you think you child is becoming more unwell while you are waiting please inform a member of the nursing staff.
- There are some toys, a TV tuned to a children's station and an x-box to help distract your child while you are waiting. Sometimes we have a play specialist and an artist who visit the waiting room and spend time doing activities with the children.

Exam Areas

- As soon as possible your child will be brought into an exam room where they will be assessed and treated by the nurses and doctors who work in the children's ED.
- Your child may need blood tests, x-rays or need to see a specialist. Please be patient as these results can take an hour or more. You may be asked to return to the waiting room while we wait for these results.

Going Home

- When your visit to the ED is over, you will be given instructions on follow-up care, medications and any treatments that are required at home. A list of pharmacies in the area are available if required.
- If your child requires an Out-Patients appointment some can be made at the reception desk in the ED where you checked in. Other specialist appointments cannot be made at the time of your visit and these will be posted to you.
- Your GP will be informed of your visit to our department.

Being Admitted

- Your child's doctor may decide that your child requires admission to one of the wards in the Childrens' Hospital for observation, treatment and sometimes for further tests. You will wait in the ED until the ward is ready for you: Maple Ward, Oak Ward, POD.
- Sometimes you may be asked to come back to Beech Day Ward or to a specialist clinic or day ward in Our Lady's Children's Hospital, Crumlin the following morning for a procedure or for further specialist advice. Please follow any information regarding fasting times that you are given. See information leaflet for further information.

General Advice

  • Ensure your Mobile is fully charged
  • Ensure you have sufficient change to pay car parking fees
  • If your child has special dietary requirements please ensure you bring their food/milk with you
  • Please bring an up to date list of all of your child's medications with you; while you are waiting to be seen do not give your child medication without informing the medical or nursing staff in the ED
  • If you come by ambulance ensure you have transport home, if required, with appropriate car seat for your child
  • Bring favourite toys for distraction, Nintendo DS, PSP etc, but keep in mind that we cannot accept responsibility for loss or damage to them.
  • Two people are required to assist with an X-ray in a child under five years. If you think your child might need an x-ray ensure you bring another adult with you.


Cleaning staff are available within the Department so if you notice anything of concern please do not hesitate to contact a member of staff regarding this.


There is an ATM machine located at the bank in the main foyer of the hospital.


As well as having security officers patrolling and posted within the ED, the Department is also monitored 24 hours a day by CCTV.


There is a Taxi Rank located near the main entrance to the Hospital. Please note that Registration Staff are not authorised to ring for taxis for patients.

Contact Us

We are unable to answer any general queries but if your child has been with us recently and you wish to talk to us please ring 01 414 3510.

If you are worried about a child in your care, you should contact your local GP service but remember that we are here 24 hours every day if you need to have your child seen urgently.

 Health-care professionals contact : 01 414 3510

GP Liaison Service

Children's GP Liaison Office Opening Hours

  • The office is open between 9.30am and 1:30pm Monday to Friday.
  • The direct line is 01 414 2396 
  • The fax number is 01 414 3890
  • The email address is

Useful Direct line phone numbers


  • The GP liaison nurse in the Children’s emergency department is Ms Pauline Deacy CNM II.
  • The objective of this service is to improve patient care through effective communication between the Children's Emergency Department and the General Practitioner and other community services.
  • The GP can contact the GP Liaison nurse to access information such as test results and radiology reports. Assistance with queries is also available.  
  • The GP Liaison nurse can also offer guidance with regard to the appropriate referral process required for a patient.
  • The GP Liaison nurse will keep the GP up- to- date with regard to the patients’ condition and follow-up needs.



Please ring ahead on 01 414 3558 if you are concerned anout a patient or need advice

  1. Please type the letter if possible.
  2. Please ensure patient contact details such as name, address, phone number and date of birth are legible.
  3. Enclose your fax number if you wish a discharge summary to be sent by return fax.


Triage Process for GP referrals to the Children’s Emergency Department

  • Children referred by a GP will undergo exactly the same triage process as a child attending without a GP letter.
  • Children will  be seen first by a triage nurse, they are then allocated a category based on the child’s condition and will be reviewed sooner if their condition changes.

Frequently asked questions

  • Direct referrals for a paediatric outpatient EEG investigation must ne referred to Our Lady's Children's Hospital, Crumlin
  • Forensic examination is not available in the Paediatric Emergancy Department. Please phont the department for advice in relation to children requiring this specialist service on 01 414 3510.
  • Any chid who comes to the hospital for a GP referred x-ray will ne directed to the Paediatric Emergency Department if an appointment has not been made.
  • WE are happy to provide advice and information to GPs at any time. Please contact the GP liaison Nurse or Consultant of the day.
  • Children under five years of age attending for x-ray or Ultrasound must ne accompanied by two adults (neither pregnant).

Patient Information Leaflets

Patient Information leaflets are available to download. We recommend that the GP/Practice Nurse/Public Health Nurse discuss the leaflet and its contents with the parent/guardian prior to its distribution.

Please set your printer to short edge duplex and double sided if you want to print the leaflet on a single A4 page.

Patient information leaflets on various childhood illnesses and procedures are available here.

Please click here to access Patient Information Leaflets

ED Charges

If you attend the ED without a letter of referral from a GP or do not have a valid medical card then a charge of €100 applies. If a charge applies to your visit you can pay this before you leave or an invoice will be issued to your home address. Details on how to make payments can be found through this link