VINELAND – South Jersey Healthcare Medical Center here today officially opened its new pediatric emergency department.

Hospital officials said the 8-bed, $550,000 facility provides a place that is more conducive to treating children than an adult emergency room situation.

The new facility is open from noon to midnight, but those hours could be expanded based on demand, hospital officials said.

The pediatrics emergency department is staffed with a mix of emergency medicine physicians, specially trained nurses and pediatric specialists rom Nemours-Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, Del.

The new emergency department is named for Dr. Joseph Zeddardi, who served as South Jersey Healthcare’s emergency medical chairman from 1998 to 2004.