5 Ways to Make Your Emergency Room Visit Better

No one wants to be taken to the emergency room. The emergency room, no matter the hospital that I have been in, is a miserable place. Everyone feels miserable, some people have broken bones, others are crying out in pain.

It’s an experience that no one wants to go through, but when you do have to go through it, it’s important to be prepared.

1. Skip the ER and Go to Urgent Care

Sometimes, a person will go to the emergency room for an issue that can be treated at an Urgent Care center. There are 7,400 urgent care centers in the United States, and there’s no need to make an appointment.

Most visits are $155, and it’s a choice that a lot of millennials are making.

When it comes to the emergency room, you’ll want to visit the ER when you have a serious issue: i.e. a heart attack or other serious issue.

2. Bring as Much Information as Possible

If you want to improve the outcome of your care, bring as much documentation and information with you as possible. While not always possible, if you’re older or have known medical issues, keep all of this information in a folder.

When you have to make an emergency visit, bring the documentation with you to the emergency room.

Hospitals where you’ve been admitted to in the past will have direct access to your digital records. Even with the advancement of electronic medical records, there’s always a chance that your medical records will take time to receive.

When possible, and it’s not always possible in emergency situations, you’ll want to bring as much medical information with you to the hospital as possible. This may mean being able to tell the doctors and staff conditions and issues that you may be suffering from.

3. Be Prepared for More Male Nurses

There’s a shift in nursing: more men are joining the field. Sure, the percentage of men running about in men’s scrub sets is still relatively low at 13%, but there are more men entering the field than ever before.

The nursing field was predicting a major shortage, and as the population continues to age, we’re finding more men entering the field.

Younger generations tend to be more accepting of this trend, but there are older generations that are still taken aback by the number of male nurses that greet them. Don’t worry – any nurse that sees you will be highly trained.

If you go back to the 1960s, only 2% of nurses were men.

4. Ask Questions Even If Embarrassed

While not directly tied to male nurses, patients are often reluctant to ask questions to the medical or nursing staff. You’re paying for your health, and you’re allowed to ask questions to male or female nurses.

Ask questions, no matter how weird or embarrassing they may be.

You may ask a question that can help doctors identify the issues you’re suffering with already. The condition you’re suffering with, let’s assume it’s pain in a joint, may have brought you to the emergency room because of a family concern.

For example, if a family member had bone cancer and you ask the doctor if the pain could be bone cancer because it runs in your family, this may give the doctor direction when trying to treat you.

Your question may have no relevance, or it may be able to assist in a faster diagnosis of your underlying illness.

5. Don’t Be Too Demanding

Yes, staff is there to help you, but they’re also human. A common issue in the emergency room is that patients will demand to see specialists right away. The unfortunate reality is that specialists are not in abundance.

You’ll have to wait to see a specialist in most cases.

So, instead, it’s best to sit down and explain your symptoms with as much accuracy as possible to those assisting you in the emergency room. This means:

  • Explaining the symptoms you felt before visiting
  • Explaining how you’re feeling this moment
  • Not exaggerating the pain or discomfort

Be as cooperative with staff as you can possibly be, and this will allow you to better receive treatment as a result. Otherwise, being demanding or rude will lead to slower treatment and worse outcomes.

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