Thursday, 06 January 2022

Alder Hey's Symptom Checker

The fast, easy to use and reliable online Symptom Checker offers parents and carers information on several of the most common symptoms in children requiring urgent care. Using the Symptom Checker will help parents and carers decide where best to get the right care for their child, be it at home, at their local chemist, walk-in centre or GP, or with a trip to Alder Hey’s Emergency Department.

Developed by the doctors and nurses at Alder Hey working alongside the Trust’s Digital team, the Symptom Checker will help guide parents and carers with what they can do at a time that can be understandably stressful.

Dr Bimal Mehta, a Consultant at Alder Hey’s Emergency Department, said:

“It’s very worrying when your child is poorly, especially now when it can be difficult to get to speak to a healthcare professional about your worries. Every parent and carer want to do what’s best, and quickly. Our new Symptom Checker will help them do that. It’s easy to use, just select one of the symptoms and follow the advice – advice that can be trusted because it has been developed using information from the NHS and Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health as well as the expertise of the clinicians from Alder Hey.

“Over winter our Emergency Department is very busy with a high number of children and young people coming to see us. Thankfully, only a small number of them are really sick and need emergency treatment, tests or admission to the hospital. When we’re very busy however, it means longer waiting times for everyone, including those really sick children that need to see us.

“The majority of children we see have coughs, colds, sore throats and tummy upsets. These are the kind of things that will get better on their own over a few days with the help of fluids, paracetamol or ibuprofen. They rarely need emergency treatment and they usually don’t need to come to our Emergency Department. We do understand though that parents and carers are concerned for their children, and that’s why we’ve developed our Symptom Checker: to help parents and carers determine the best course of action to take, whether that is treatment at home or if it does indeed require a trip to our Emergency Department.”

The Symptom Checker can be found from the homepage of Alder Hey’s website at or directly at It currently offers advice on 17 common symptoms with plans to grow this number over coming weeks. Users select one of the symptoms and are then presented with a range of easy to follow advice.

In addition to using our Symptom Checker, you can call NHS 111, or go to, for advice on finding the right support.

There is also lots of helpful advice on how to treat conditions on the NHS website -

People can contact their GP Surgery to request an appointment. Evening and weekend appointments are available.

Liverpool Walk-in Centres are also available. They operate daily between 8am – 8pm. Please call 0300 100 1004 to arrange an appointment directly.

You can also visit your local pharmacy, who will be able provide advice on self-care at home.