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Our facilities include a 252-bed children's hospital with a new campus (opened in 1990) and a designated pediatric trauma center with a formal trauma response team. All pediatric medical and surgical subspecialties are represented and available for consultation with ED physicians.

Primary Children's Hospital Emergency Department

Primary Children’s Hospital serves 42,000 patients a year, 22% of them trauma-related. The hospital has a 23% admission rate, 35 beds, and four trauma beds.

Its Level One trauma center provides tertiary care for entire Mountain West region, including Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Utah, and Nevada.

Transport System – LifeFlight

LifeFlight is one of the oldest and largest civilian medical transport programs in the U.S., and one of the few to have a pediatric team that performs scene-flights. Its ground, rotor, and fixed wing LifeFlight transport is available 24 hours/day.

LifeFlight has specialized teams for transport of neonatal, pediatric, and adult patients, and performs 800+ pediatric transports per year, most controlled by ED physicians.

Aircraft include two new KingAir fixed-wing aircraft based at the SLC airport, and two Augusta helicopters made in Switzerland specifically for high altitude use.

Pediatric trauma patients transported by LifeFlight have had superior clinical outcomes when compared to international norms. Lifeflight is the first and only civilian air ambulance organization in the United States certified by the FAA to conduct hoist and rescue operations.

Primary Children's Hospital's referral base for transport covers approximately 10% of the continental U.S., the largest geographical area in the U.S., including Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Western Colorado, Northern New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, and Utah.

Rapid Treatment Unit (RTU)

Our rapid treatment united opened in August 1999. The unit has 9,000+ square feet of space for 24 patient beds and is tailored to serve the needs of hospitalized children who will have shorter stays.

The RTU provides care for children with a wide range of illnesses including croup, asthma, bronchiolitis, pneumonia, dehydration, constipation, jaundice, accidental ingestions, skin infections, seizures, migraines, and concussion after closed head injury.

The unit is administered by the division of pediatric emergency medicine and staffed by physicians board certified in pediatrics. The RTU accepts direct admissions of stable children from other emergency departments and clinics through the Primary Children’s Hospital direct admit line at 801-662-3648.

PCMC Pediatric Intensive Care Unit

The pediatric intensive care unit has 44 beds, located one floor above the emergency department. Pediatric intensivists and fellows work in close cooperation with pediatric emergency physicians to stabilize critically ill children in the ED.


The University of Utah Radiology Department is located next to the emergency department. We are able to obtain head CT scans quickly, using a high-speed spiral scanner. Sedation is rarely used.

All radiographs are digital, and multiple viewing stations are available in both trauma and medical resuscitation areas and in the MD charting areas.

Utah Poison Control Center

The Utah Poison Control Center receives more than 48,000 calls annually, and 60% of calls concern patients under six years of age.

The center provides 24-hour access to toxicological expertise for the management of pediatric toxic ingestions. The center also provides inpatient toxicological consultations.