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Children's Assessment Unit

Situated next to the Emergency Centre, the purpose-designed Children's Assessment Unit (​CAU) has all the skills and resources to assess and diagnose a huge range of medical conditions, which differ from those seen in Accident and Emergency.

Conditions seen in the Children's Assessment Unit range from respiratory problems, chest infections and tonsillitis, through to ear infections, gastroenteritis, poor feeding and abdominal pain, to rashes, and skin infections.

The young patients can be referred by their GP, who can call the unit and send a letter with the family. Occasionally, an ambulance paramedic responding to a 999 call will decide it is more appropriate to bring a child direct to the unit, or a clinician in the Emergency Centre will seek the advice of a specialist paediatrician.

Some patients, who are well known to the Children’s Hospital team because of a long-standing issue like a respiratory complaint, are given an open access plan, which means if they develop a problem relating to their overall condition they can turn up at the unit at any time. Open access plans are decided by consultants in the team.

Children who need to be admitted to hospital either go on to one of the two Children’s Hospital wards, or in the most severe cases, can be taken straight to the Children's Intensive Care Unit.​