ER’s are like they the drain at the end of the health care pipeline – everything ultimately ends up there. It’s your last stop before your final disposition. There’s only three ways out – you’re either discharged home, admitted to a unit, or packed up in a body bag and sent to the morgue.
Anybody that either can’t or won’t be seen by a provider on short notice (e.g. general medicine, cardiology, orthopedics, oncology, pulmonology, neurology, urology, pediatrics, geriatrics, psych, OB/GYN, infectious disease, etc.) is simply told “go the ER.” No beds in the hospital? Send ‘em to the ER! ICU’s full? Keep ‘me in the ER! Just don’t want to deal with your patient? Send ‘em to the ER! Maybe you’re a practitioner and just want to cover your ass? Send ‘em to the ER!
We’re always open and we never turn anyone away. If you’re sick we’ll take care of you and if you’re dying you’ve found yourself in the right place.
And here’s the cherry on top – we like what we do and we’re good at it. There’s just one caveat: whoever’s in charge of staffing, for god’s sake make sure there’s enough of us working to treat these people safely.
It doesn’t seem like too much to ask.