Cancer and Blood Disorders Center
What to Expect
COVID-19: What to Expect for Your Child’s Safety at In-Person Appointments
We’ve made a lot of changes to our facilities to protect our patients, families and staff from covid-19. Every patient is allowed to have a maximum of one parent or caregiver accompany them. Everyone else, including siblings of any age, may not come along. When you come for your appointment, you will see that we’re requiring everyone to wear masks at all times, cleaning check-in and registration desks between visits, screening for symptoms at all entrances and have set up our spaces to encourage social distancing. Watch what to expect at your clinic visit during COVID-19 (video). Learn more about the rest of the safety measures we have in place.
Preparing for a Clinic Visit
- Fax us records. Ask your child’s primary care provider to fax us records about your child’s overall health and growth. Our fax number is 206-987-3946.
- Provide test results related to your child’s condition. Most of the time, the doctor who refers you to Seattle Children’s will send copies of lab results, imaging studies, pathology slides and other helpful information. Ask your doctor to send them or bring copies.
For most families, the first visit is at our Hematology and Oncology Clinic, sometimes called “Hem/Onc” (heem-onk). You and your child will meet with several different members of the healthcare team.
Here is what you can expect:
- Lab appointment. A nurse will draw your child’s blood or place a catheter into their vein. This is called an intravenous (IV) line. This takes about 20 minutes. Blood test results take about 1 hour.
- Meet with your provider for an exam. Depending on your child’s condition, they will see a cancer doctor or blood specialist. This takes 45 to 90 minutes. Learn more about the Cancer and Blood Disorders Center team.
- Other tests or biopsies. Your child may need other tests such as X-rays or tests of their blood or spit to look for changes in genes. Doctors may need to remove a small piece of tissue to learn more about your child’s condition. This is called a needle aspiration or biopsy. Some procedures require anesthesia so your child stays still and does not feel pain.
- Meet other specialists or a social worker. Your family may meet with other specialists who help care for your child, such as a surgeon, radiation oncologist or radiologist. You may also meet with a social worker, who helps your family deal with the challenges of your child’s condition. Throughout your child’s care, a social worker will connect you to support services and help plan for a hospital stay, if needed.
- Answers to your questions. We will try to answer all of your questions. Please ask if anything is not clear.
- Informing your primary care provider. Each provider who sees your child will write notes for your child’s medical chart. We will send a copy to your child’s primary care provider.
Sometimes the team will be able to talk with you about a likely diagnosis for your child’s condition at the first visit. But often the diagnosis is not made until after we review all test results. After that, the team will explain your child’s diagnosis and suggest a treatment plan.
Before your visit:
- Send us your child’s records. Ask your child’s primary care provider or referring doctor to fax us records about your child’s condition, including lab results, imaging studies and pathology slides. Our fax number is 206-987-3946.
- We will review your child’s medical record before your visit.
During your visit:
You and your child will meet with your child’s healthcare team. Depending on your child’s condition, they will see a cancer doctor, blood specialist, surgeon or radiation oncologist. Learn more about the Cancer and Blood Disorders Center team.
- The doctor will examine your child. This takes 45 to 90 minutes.
- Sometimes the doctor may order more tests. These may include imaging studies, lab tests or a needle aspiration or biopsy.
- We will talk with you about our review of your child’s record and what we find during the visit.
- We will partner with you to determine next steps.
- Test results related to your child’s condition if your primary care provider has not sent them already. This includes results of lab tests and imaging studies. You can call 206-287-2106 to make sure we have received your records.
- Medicines or a list of them. Include nonprescription items like vitamins. Include the name, dose (amount) and instructions.
- Forms you need to have signed by our providers, for example, any school forms.
- Snacks for your child in case the appointment lasts longer than expected. Or you may prefer to visit the hospital cafeteria.
- Books, small toys or tablets for your child to play with during their visit. The first clinic appointment may be a longer visit, depending on your child’s needs.
- Before you leave, we will give you detailed instructions about what will happen next.
- Between clinic visits you can call 206-987-2106 and ask for the triage nurse.
- Once we have information from all the providers who saw your child at their first visit, we will contact you to make the next appointment.
- We will call you with test results.
- If you are a MySeattleChildren’s member, you can check online for some of your results.
Call 206-987-2106 as soon as possible.
Preparing for Surgery
Preparing for a Hospital Stay
Children who stay overnight to get care for cancer and blood diseases stay in our Cancer Care Unit. It has private patient rooms, family lounges and easy access to a fitness gym and garden terrace.
- See tips on Where to Turn When Preparing for Your Child’s Hospital Stay from social worker Ashley Peters.
- Find out what you need to know about your child’s hospital stay.
- Learn about main campus amenities.
- Watch I-Bizzle show off his crib in the Cancer Care Unit.
- Take a look inside our Cancer Care Unit.