Children represent 25 percent of the U. S. population and face specialized medical issues due to their unique developmental and physiologic characteristics.
Pediatric care requires specialized equipment, supplies, and pharmaceuticals.
While specialized pediatric hospitals provide excellent
care for children on a day-to-day basis, special consideration needs to be given to providing pediatric care during public health emergencies and disasters, such as mass casualty incidents.
Though much progress has been made in this area, significant gaps in pediatric disaster readiness remain.
These gaps are most evident in highly specialized areas such as trauma , emerging infectious disease (EID) , exposures to chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) agents, and behavioral health.