L11 Epilepsy ward

Street address
Children's Castle
Stenbäckinkatu 28F, 3. fl, Helsinki

Postal address
P.O. Box 280, FIN-00029 HUS

Contact information
Office: 09 471 80381
Fax: 09 471 80337 

Nurse manager: Jaana Saari
Ward secretary: 09 471 80301

Visiting hours: The ward does not have specific visiting times. Visitors are welcome, but are advised to agree with the child's parents and care personnel when is the best time to visit the patient.
Ward L11 is the only hospital ward in Finland specializing in the treatment of children with epilepsy. The ward has 10 beds. The patients' age range is from a few weeks to young adults.
To be admitted, patients need a referral from the epilepsy clinic, emergency clinic, local health center, private doctor or a central hospital. Children are referred to the ward for examinations and/or for the treatment of severe epilepsy. Examinations preceding surgical treatment of severe epilepsy are typically performed on the ward. 
One in every five admitted patients require emergency care. The most common causes for emergency care include frequent seizures, first-time seizure and problems with medication.
The length of stay depends on the examinations to be performed. For an MRI scan performed under general anesthesia, patients are required to arrive at the ward in the morning and are discharged in the afternoon. When a child has been admitted because of severe seizures, determining the correct medication to manage epilepsy may take several days, if not weeks.
Days on the ward are punctuated by examinations, developmental assessments by therapists, meal times and rest periods. There is also time for play during the day. The timetable for the different examinations and assessments will be finalized about a week before the admittance.  Because the ward is also an emergency clinic, there may be last minute changes to the scheduled programme. Parents can participate in the care of their children during the inpatient period.

Before coming to hospital

Bring the following items with you to hospital:
  • Health information card;
  • Personal toiletries (soap, shampoo, toothbrush, etc.);
  • Personal medications, e.g. asthma inhalers;
  • Personal assistive equipment;
  • Clothes with your name on them (if you want to wear your own clothes);
  • Shoes or slippers;
  • School books; and
  • Favourite toy and/or some other pastime.
It is recommended that you notify the ward in advance if your child has special diet.
Knowing why he or she has been admitted to hospital and what is going to happen there helps the child and the parents prepare for the hospital stay.
Tell your child about the hospital stay, but remember to take his or her age and development into consideration.
  • Children under school age: tell them about the hospital stay only a few days in advance.
  • School-aged children need more than a few days to process the information.
  • Adolescents and young adults should be told as soon as an inpatient period has been scheduled.
  • Even babies sense their parents' feelings. Hence, it is recommended that you talk to your baby about going to hospital.
Talk about the following issues with your child/adolescent:
  • Why it is necessary to go to the hospital;
  • What will happen during the stay;
  • How long the child will be in hospital; and
  • Is one of the parents or some other adult close to the child going to be with him or her at the hospital.


Parents participation in the care of their child


Parents are welcome to participate in caring for their child as much as they want and are able to. A coffee maker is located in a room dedicated to the parents where you can also store food and snacks. We are prepared to accommodate parents who want to stay on the ward overnight. However, there is not enough room for both parents or the whole family to stay on the ward overnight.

When a child admitted to the ward is not from the Helsinki Metropolitan Area and his or her stay is estimated to last several days, parents can seek accommodation from the Ronald McDonald House (in Finnish) or nearby hotels. Parents can eat at the staff restaurant at a discounted price. The cafeterias in the Children's Castle and the Children's Hospital are open on weekdays.

Parents participating in the care of their children can apply for loss of income compensation from Kela (the Social Insurance Institution of Finland). You can ask about compensation for loss of income and other issues related to social security from the social worker, phone 050 427 9820.