Today's guest bloggers are Erica Darrows, BS, CCLS, team lead child life specialist in the emergency department at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and Shannon Taylor, CCLS, child life specialist in the emergency department at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. March is Child Life Month.

When your child is sick or injured it can be terrifying and have you feeling out of control. Often times, families arrive to the Pediatric Emergency Department stressed and without key items to help themselves and their child during this hectic time.

Here is a list of items that you would want to consider grabbing before you go:

1. Your Child's Comfort Item

We know a child copes best when their family member or caregiver are close by, however, do they have one item that they can’t go without? A binky, blanket, a stuffed animal or a sippy cup, just to name a few.

2. Your Electronic Devices & Chargers

If you have a cell phone with all of your family and friend contacts try to remember to bring it with you. As for chargers, some Emergency Department’s may have the capabilities to help but with the varying devices you will want to be prepared.

3. Your Child's "Favorite" Thing

This can be different for every child but try to think of that ONE item that your child plays with. Comfort items are great but with this item think play and distraction. Often times Emergency Departments won’t have this favorite item and in turn can make for a long stay. Having a “favorite” thing can help normalize your child’s environment while in the Emergency Department.

4. Undergarments and Clothing

Your child may need to get admitted to the hospital. Most hospitals have basic hygiene items, however, if you have time to grab your personal undergarments and a change of comfortable clothing, which will be a big help if you need to stay.

5. Your Medication (the caregiver)

Often times, parents arrive to the Pediatric Emergency Department without an important medication such as their inhaler or insulin. It is important that you stay well for your child and managing your medications will be best for both of you.

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