May 15, 2024

Top 10 Reasons to Use Elliot’s VirtualER This Summer

By Dr. Joey Scollan, Elliot Hospital 

Summer brings boundless opportunities for adventures, but it also presents health risks, especially for children. As a parent, safeguarding your child's health during these warmer months can be a challenge. Elliot’s VirtualER offers a convenient and dependable solution for addressing summer-related health concerns when things don’t go as planned.  

Elliot VirtualERHow Does the VirtualER Work?  

Elliot Hospital’s VirtualER service is an online platform that connects patients virtually to Elliot emergency-certified physicians. This ensures they receive the same level of expertise they would expect from an in-person visit to our Emergency Department.  

Our doctors will assess your child’s needs, and if no in-person care is needed, they can care for them right then for the cost of an office visit. If, after evaluation, your medical concern requires in-person care, they will seamlessly transition you to Elliot Urgent Care or the Elliot’s Emergency Department as necessary, with no charge for the virtual visit. The Elliot VirtualER can even get you started with any diagnostic testing you need as part of your care.  

What Conditions Can Be Treated Through the VirtualER?  

Our VirtualER service caters to a wide range of patients, particularly those who are unsure whether their condition warrants an emergency room or urgent care visit. For non-life-threatening conditions such as minor burns, cold and flu symptoms, or UTIs, the VirtualER is where you should start. It’s perfect for patients trying to figure out if this is an emergency department or urgent care type of visit. 

Top 10 reasons to use Elliot’s VirtualER this summer: 

1. Sunburn: Prolonged exposure to the sun can result in painful sunburns. Watch for redness, swelling, and blistering of the skin. Severe sunburns, characterized by intense pain, fever, or blistering over a large area, may require immediate medical attention. 

2. Heat Exhaustion/Heat Stroke: High temperatures coupled with physical activity can lead to heat-related illnesses, with heat stroke being the most severe. Symptoms include high body temperature, altered mental state, nausea, and rapid pulse. The Elliot VirtualER can help manage symptoms and determine if an emergency room visit is necessary.  

3. Head Injury: Summer activities increase the risk of head injuries, especially during sports and outdoor play. Look for symptoms such as headache, dizziness, vomiting, and changes in behavior. Elliot’s VirtualER can assess the severity of head injuries and recommend appropriate care. For severe symptoms like loss of consciousness or confusion, go directly to the emergency room. Nurses Week food

4. Falls & Bike Accidents: Falls and bike accidents are common among children, often resulting in abrasions, cuts, or even broken bones. Monitor for signs of pain, swelling, or limited mobility after a fall. Elliot’s VirtualER can provide guidance on wound care and when further evaluation by a health care professional is necessary, especially for suspected fractures or deep wounds that may require stitches. 

5. Burns: Whether from sun exposure, campfires, or cooking mishaps, burns are a frequent summer hazard. Pay attention to blistering, redness, and pain at the burn site. Elliot’s VirtualER can advise on proper burn care, including cooling the burn with water and applying an appropriate dressing. Go to the emergency room for severe burns, particularly those involving large areas of the body or deep tissue damage. 

6. Tick/Insect Bites: Outdoor excursions increase the risk of tick and insect bites, which can transmit diseases or cause allergic reactions. Watch for signs of tick attachment, such as a bull's-eye rash in the case of Lyme disease, or symptoms of an allergic reaction like swelling or difficulty breathing after an insect bite. Elliot’s VirtualER can guide safe tick removal. 

7. Poison Ivy/Sumac: Contact with poisonous plants like poison ivy or poison sumac can result in itchy rashes and blisters. Be aware of redness, swelling, and oozing of the affected skin. Elliot’s VirtualER can recommend remedies for managing symptoms. Go to the emergency room only for severe reactions, such as rash in eyes or private areas. 

8. Eye Irritation: Whether from chlorinated pool water, airborne allergens, or pink eye, eye irritation is common during the summer months. Look for redness, itching, and excessive tearing. Elliot’s VirtualER can offer tips for soothing irritated eyes. 

9. Food Poisoning: Outdoor gatherings and picnics increase the risk of foodborne illnesses, which can cause symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. Monitor for signs of dehydration, such as dry mouth and decreased urination, especially in young children. Elliot’s VirtualER can advise on managing symptoms of food poisoning. 

10. Swimmer's Ear: Prolonged exposure to water, particularly in swimming pools or natural bodies of water, can lead to swimmer's ear, characterized by ear pain, itching, and drainage. Elliot’s VirtualER can provide guidance on alleviating symptoms. 

With Elliot’s VirtualER, expert medical advice is readily accessible, ensuring your child's health and safety remain a priority throughout the summer season. Stay prepared and informed with the convenience and reliability of Elliot’s VirtualER. 

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