The children’s ward at St John’s Hospital in West Lothian has revealed it will not be admitting patients for three weeks.
The Livingston hospital will also cut its out-of-hours service.
NHS Lothian said they have been left with no choice but to take the action after trainee paediatric doctors were taken out of the Livingston hospital in April.
Since then, the health board have been using locum doctors to keep the ward and out of hours service running.
But due to holidays over the next month, children will be treated at the Sick Kids Hospital in Edinburgh for three weeks.
West Lothian Council have written to health secretary Nicola Sturgeon to ask her to intervene over the plans.
From Monday July 9 the ward will be open for assessment only between 8am and 8pm. Children who then need to be admitted will be transferred to Edinburgh. The ward will be closed at weekends and overnight.
The process for the transfer system has not been finalised yet but NHS Lothian said they will make sure families in West Lothian are made aware of the system. No changes will be made to maternity or neonatal services.
NHS Lothian said in order to provide a 24 hour, seven-day-a-week service they need one junior doctor, an experienced doctor or consultant and an on-call consultant on duty overnight.
A drop in the number of trainees in the south east of Scotland led to the Dean of Postgraduate Medicine pulling trainee paediatric doctors out of St John’s in April. They have since said trainees will return in August.
Dr David Farquharson, medical director, NHS Lothian, said: "The provision of a safe service for children, mothers and babies, is our top priority and we will not compromise that safety in any way. This is a temporary measure and the decision has not been taken lightly.
"Since the trainees were withdrawn in April we have relied heavily on the goodwill of those working in children's services and on the ability to secure locum doctors at short notice.
"We have exhausted all options in trying to arrange the same level of cover in July but as this is the peak holiday season, we have been unable to reassure ourselves that we would be able to provide a safe and effective service for the children's ward and maternity services at St John's over this three week period.
"The children's ward will return to a 24 hour seven-day-a -week service in August.
"The postgraduate dean has confirmed that trainee doctors will also be returning to St John's hospital in August, and we welcome that decision. We have also been successful in recruiting one new doctor to the team at St John's and will be interviewing for further experienced doctors in the coming weeks."
West Lothian Council have asked for an urgent meeting with Ms Sturgeon about the situation.
Council Leader John McGinty said: "Any reduction of paediatric services at St John's is completely unacceptable, even for a temporary period.
"We requested that NHS Lothian ensure that these services are retained at St John's during July, and have now asked the Cabinet Secretary to step in to protect this vital service on behalf of West Lothian's children.
"We believe that any loss of paediatrics for a period could have a detrimental impact on local children, particularly during the summer holiday period, and intend to take every action we can to ensure this is not allowed to happen."
Dr Richard Simpson, Labour's health spokesman, said: "This is not the fault of hard-working staff. The SNP is creating an environment in the health service that risks these practices becoming more likely by imposing deep cuts to staffing levels, resulting in staffing levels on the ground being thin.
A Scottish Government spokeswoman said: "It is ultimately for boards to determine their staffing requirements and respond to any clinical needs. However, we are very clear that patient safety has to be the top priority and we expect the board to work with its partners to continue to provide safe and effective care for children across Lothian.
"We recognise the challenges being faced by boards in relation to doctors in training, which is why we have promoted a policy of moving towards services delivered predominantly by trained doctors.
"We have received reassurances from NHS Lothian that they see this as a temporary measure and that they are working to find a longer-term solution to this issue."
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