Trauma and Injury Prevention - Patient Care and Treatment

Trauma and Injury Prevention - Patient Care and Treatment

The Pediatric Trauma and Injury Prevention program at Penn State Children’s Hospital quickly treats serious, sudden injuries in children. 

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Pediatric Trauma


Injury Prevention


Immediate, expert care

The “golden hour” is the 60 minutes right after a serious injury. This one hour can mean the difference between life and death - which is why care and diagnosis must start right away.

We are fully equipped to resuscitate (save) and stabilize badly injured children in the shortest time possible. That’s why other hospitals that aren’t equipped to handle trauma in children send their patients to us. Injured children arrive in our Emergency Department by ambulance or helicopter to be treated by our trauma care specialists.

We offer many kinds of trauma and injury prevention services. Some of the more common services are listed below.


Experts in our Concussion Program evaluate and treat mild brain injuries in children, teens and adults. We are a certified ImPACT testing site.

Critical Care

Our Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) is a twelve-bed unit staffed by full-time Pediatric Critical Care Medicine specialists. This unit is the region’s only intensive care unit dedicated to caring for critically ill and injured children. Specialized services include:

  • Mechanical ventilation
  • Sedation
  • Pain control
  • Nutrition
  • Hemodynamic support
  • Critical care nursing services

We follow national standards for treating children with severe head injuries, and our Pediatric Neurosurgery, Pediatric Critical Care Medicine and Pediatric Surgery teams worked together to create treatment protocols and procedures. The PICU at Penn State Children’s Hospital is known for its high acuity levels (ability to treat children with severe and/or multiple injuries) and low standardized mortality (death) rates.

Emergency Department Trauma Care

Our Emergency Medicine team is always prepared for an injured child's arrival. Our procedures follow the Advanced Trauma Life Support Guidelines from the American College of Surgeons. These protocols help make sure an injured child is evaluated for life-threatening injuries and treated quickly. 

We know parents want to be with their children during emergencies, and it can help calm and reassure children to have their parents near. Whenever we can, we allow parents to be in the trauma room or to see their child as soon as possible.