Coming to emergency

Our emergency department provides assessment and care for children and young people up to the age of 15 (and before 16th birthday). We also see young people up to 18 years with pre-existing chronic conditions and mental health conditions who need urgent medical attention.

If your child suddenly becomes unwell, or has been seriously injured, bring them to the emergency department as soon as possible. The emergency department is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Travelling to emergency

If it is safe to do so, you can drive your child to emergency yourself. There is a stopping bay located at the front of the hospital on Stanley Street just outside the Emergency Department on Level 1. This stopping bay can only be occupied for a maximum of 20 minutes before you will be required to move your vehicle. Information about the closest carparks to the hospital can be found on the Travelling to hospital page.

Where a serious trauma has occurred, call 000 and an ambulance will transport your child to emergency.

When you arrive

When you arrive at the Emergency Department a triage nurse will be the first person to see your child. He or she will will ask what’s wrong with them and determine how quickly they need to be seen by a doctor and in which area of the department they will be seen.  Most children will wait to be seen by a doctor in a cubicle.

Why you may wait

“Triage” means that the sickest patients are seen first. Emergency patients are prioritised, or triaged, and seen according to the severity and urgency of their condition. We cannot see patients on a “first-come, first-serve” basis.  If we are busy, and you have to wait, we appreciate your patience. We will see you as soon as possible.

We realise that waiting can be frustrating but we strongly urge you not to leave before a doctor sees your child.  The triage process is not a full medical assessment, just a means of prioritising patients to ensure the sickest children are seen first.


  • If you think your child’s condition has worsened while you have been waiting, please notify a staff member immediately.
  • If your child is in pain and requires pain relief tell a doctor or nurse immediately.
  • Do not give your child anything to eat or drink without checking with one of the doctors or nurses.
  • Please tell the doctors or nurses caring for your child if you child has had any medication (including paracetamol or ibuprofen) in the past 24 hours.
  • Please notify us of any allergies your child has.
  • Do not give any medications to your child while in hospital, without discussing them with your treating team.

Catchment area restrictions

Families living in South Brisbane and the surrounding area, should attend the Emergency Department at the Queensland Children’s Hospital if their child needs urgent medical attention.

Families living outside of the Queensland Children’s Hospital catchment area should go to the Emergency Department at their local hospital in the first instance. You can search by your suburb to find your local hospital in South East Queensland using our Hospital catchment finder.

Contact us

For general enquiries you can contact our Emergency Department via the hospital switchboard.
t: 07 3068 1111

In an emergency call 000

For all other non-urgent health related enquiries contact
13 HEALTH (13 43 25 84)

Find out more

For more information about our Emergency Department, including eligibility criteria, catchment area restrictions, location details and referral advice view our emergency department page.