Before Going to the Emergency Room

In this Article:
Before Going to the Emergency Room
Tips to Keep You Prepared
Determining If or When You Should Go

In 1996 over one half of the 90 million emergency room visits made in the US were considered unnecessary, pointing to a bizarre and costly trend among the American public to forego scheduling a doctor’s appointment in favor of simply going to the ER. This, despite the fact that routine emergency room costs are sometimes three times as much as a visit to a physician’s office, a figure that does not include the time wasted waiting at the ER—which, considering the system in place, is a substantial waste of time for non-urgent patients.

An Emergency room operates according to the ‘triage system’ in an effort to make certain that the patients who need truly urgent care get that care. That system works by instituting an evaluation system that, appropriately, moves certain patients to the ‘front of the line’. Those whose evaluation did not disclose an urgent case wait an average of around two hours before they are seen by a physician.

No one wants to wait two hours to be seen by a emergency room doctor when you do not feel well, especially in the lobby of a frantic emergency room. The following tips can prepare you for sudden medical problems and help you avoid spending so much wasted time at the emergency room.



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