Preparing for Your Visit
What to expect during a visit to our Emergency Department
Triage and registration
- Please sign in with the Greeter when you arrive.
- Triage: A triage nurse will then meet/visit with you. He or she will ask for a brief medical history and a description of your symptoms as well as any medications you are currently taking. The nurse will also take some measurements, like blood pressure and temperature, to evaluate the severity of your emergency. He or she can also answer some of your questions.
- Based on your triage evaluation and the volume of patients in the department when you arrive, you may be asked to return to the waiting area until a health care professional is available to see you.
- Registration: A representative from patient access will speak with you to confirm your registration information such as address, phone number and insurance coverage, if applicable. It is important that you provide a telephone number in case we need to call you after you have gone home, for example to provide test results or other information.
- We will also ask you to sign consent for treatment. In most cases, parents or other legal guardians will be required to provide written consent in order for us to treat children under 18 years of age.
Pain and medication
- Please inform your nurse immediately if you are in pain. We will do everything we can to relieve your pain, but unfortunately we cannot always provide pain medications while you wait. The drugs may unintentionally worsen your condition or interfere with our ability to diagnose and treat you.
Food and drink
- Unless instructed otherwise, we ask that our patients not eat or drink anything while waiting. A full stomach may interfere with treatment and diagnosis. Please do not bring food into treatment areas. Food will be ordered for a patient by his/her nurse once the physician has determined that it is safe to eat.
Treatment and tests
- We will move you into a treatment room for examination by a health care professional as quickly as possible. Depending on your emergency, your treatment may be simple and quick, or it may require conferences with specialists the use of lab tests or it may require admission to the hospital. We will keep you informed of your treatment at all times. We strive to provide the highest quality of care and that includes addressing your concerns and questions.
- Often your doctor will order medical tests to determine your condition and the best method of treatment. It can take 60 to 90 minutes to receive test results back. Please let us know if there is anything we can do to keep you more comfortable during this time.
Non-emergency care services
- Some patients may be directed to our Non- Emergent Care Area where less acute conditions can be managed and treated effectively. This is a distinct area of the ED with its own small separate waiting room.
- We know how important family and friends’ support and presence can be to you. With your approval, we will make every effort to keep your family and friends informed about your condition, and we will allow them to visit you as soon as possible.
- To enable our emergency personnel to work efficiently, and to protect the privacy of all our patients, only two family members or friends may stay with you in the emergency treatment area.
- We do not recommend bringing children into the emergency treatment area unless absolutely necessary. If the patient is a child, both parents are, of course, welcome to stay in the treatment room. Visitors will be issued a “Visitor Badge” to wear while in treatment areas.
- Visitors may be asked to return to the waiting room for short periods if the physician needs to provide privacy to the patient for an examination/procedure. Visitors will be allowed back in as soon as possible. Visitors may also be asked to wait in the waiting room at the patient’s request.