Penn State Hershey debuts Emergency Department for kids

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DERRY TOWNSHIP, Pa. - Penn State Hershey Medical Center celebrated the opening of its new Pediatric Emergency Department on Thursday.

The new children's E.R. features 12 private treatment rooms with colors and designs picked to appeal to kids. Toys, as well as gaming systems, and specially catered meals will be available. Doctors say they want to help children feel more comfortable during an experience that can be scary.

"I hope that they're eyes light up and they're excited about the bright colors and kind of welcoming things, so that they're not scared or crying and afraid," Department of Emergency Medicine Chair, Dr. Susan Promes said, "We're going to do our best to make sure they have an excellent experience while they're here, not just them, but their families as well."

Another feature of the department is the new Child Life staff who are available to help children cope with their medical emergency.

"There are people actually trained to help specially care for children and explain things to them and to make sure their experience is fun," Dr. Promes said, "It's almost learning how to have fun with them as they go through difficult times."

The $2.1 million project began in March 2015 and wrapped up earlier this month.