Sunday, September 28, 2014

I been robbed

Here are the top ten things stolen from our emergency room:

1) syringes - before drawers were locked

2) linen - sheets, towels and wash cloths

3) phones off the wall

4) fetal doppler

5) lap top

6) bandaids, bandages

7) box lunches

8) gowns

9) oximeter

10) staff purse

11) thermometers

12) TV remotes

13) box lunches

14) scrubs

15) wheelchair

exta added bonus points: Christmas ornaments in the lobby

Friday, September 26, 2014

reality is a bitch

You know when something hits you and you say to yourself: Of course...duh.  I had a thought about work.  From now on, just about everybody is going to be either a train wreck or a nut case.  The days of getting normal people into an inner city ER are over.  Bye bye.  Never coming back.

People have too many other options these days.  They have shiny new suburban ERs.  There are more and more urgent cares.  There are orthopedic urgent cares.  Any kind of normal person is going to them first.

I kept thinking, okay, yes the train wrecks and nuts are increasing, but eventually it will balance out again.  It won't though.  Here's a sampling of a typical shift:

drunk woman who was beat up a few days ago and her whole face is bruised over

ex con guy convicted of attempted murder

16 year old who was stabbed in the back

chronically ill 300 lb woman who is now having another problem

women who is shouting baaabaaaa like a sheep

confused grandpa who lives alone with no family

16 year old heroin overdose

The days of ankle sprains, lacerations, strep throat are over.  Those people went to Bob's urgent care emporium.  Why would they want to sit in the lobby with the hood rats and junkies and STDs and moaning back pains?  It scary and gross out there.  I don't blame them.  Bob's is clean, new, has a fish tank in the lobby.

So welcome to the modern inner city/ghetto ER....where there is a constant stream of train wrecks. nuts, ineffective copers, junkies, drunks, neurotics.  This is our life now. Reality is a bitch.


Thursday, September 25, 2014

the freak show that is triage

I take my seat at the window.  No one is in front of it, thank God. I have already transformed into the incredible hunk as I do every time I am assigned to triage.

 I hate our triage set up.  It was designed to drive the staff insane.  There is a camera that looks at the entrance, so we have a screen where we can see cars pull up, people walking up. Its a long way from our entrance to the desk.  A ridiculous design.  A cruel design.  It allows us to watch people walk a distance to the desk.  This allows many to put on a performance.  Sometimes a person who strode up to the entrance on camera will be practically crawling when they get near the window.

Let the freak show begin. It often resembles the cantina scene in Star Wars. There are goths.  Tattoed people. Pierced people. Women with so much cleavage,  I worry the girls will escape.  Twitchy people.  Falling asleep people.  Yelling people. Hostile people.  People who go to the floor. People who want to show me something on their butt people.  Drunk people.  People who have smoked dope.  Reek of cigarettes and beer.  People who make you feel like you are in the twilight zone.  People who make the hair on the back of your neck stand up.  Whispering people.  People who brought gruesome "samples" in little jars.  Vomitting people. Coughing people. People who can't breathe.  People in pain. Pale people. Flushed people.  Bleeding people. Broken people.  Sad people.  Crying people.  Anxious people. Dirty people.  Smelly people. Plain people.  Good looking people. People in wheelchairs.  No english people. Funny people. Mean people. Nice people.

Once in a while there is a Marilyn.  You know Marilyn who was on the Munsters.  She was the only "normal" member of the family.   The rest of them were monsters.  Marilyn allows you to relax for a moment.