We have available well-qualified phone nurses ready to answer routine medical questions. Some parents wonder if their child is "sick enough" to need to see a doctor. The phone nurse may be able to help you make a determination, or they may be able to give advice for home treatment of common medical problems.
If you call us with an urgent but non-emergency medical condition and you wish to make an appointment right away, you will be connected with a phone nurse who will help determine if an immediate appointment is needed. The nurse may offer advice to allow your child to be seen later in the day when appointments are available. During the weekend, all appointment calls are screened by the phone nurse since weekend hours are set aside for problems requiring urgent attention.
Our phone nurses' hours are:
Monday-Friday 8:30 am - 12:00 pm
1:30 pm - 4:30 pm
(Phone messages left after 430 will be handled the following business day)
Saturday & Sunday 8:00 am - 10:00 am
The calling service is for after-hour non-life threatening medical emergencies only. If you have a potential life-threatening medical emergency, call 911 or go directly to the Emergency Room.
Any calls after we have closed should be made to our answering service (the operator at Frye Regional Medical Center) at 828-315-5000. Please inform the operator you wish to speak with the on-call practitioner for The ChildHealth Center. You will then be placed on hold while the practitioner is paged. If the practitioner is not available that moment, the operator will take your name and number, and the practitioner will call you back shortly. If for some reason you have not received a return call within an hour, please call the operator again (occasionally pages don't make it to the beeper).
Our practitioners spend a great deal of time with each after-hour call they receive; far more than the actual call itself. Your child's medical notes have to be updated, and sometimes pharmacies or other medical arrangements have to be made. Because of the effort required to provide you with this service, you may be billed $15 per call for calls that last longer than 10 minutes, or are detailed and/or complex in nature. Your insurance may or may not cover this charge. If they do not cover this type of service you will be responsible for paying. You should become familiar with your insurance plan and what is covered before seeing the physician.