Friday, March 22, 2013

It is beyond my control

The past few days have been quite challenging. They scheduled only one doctor who is notorious for being the slowest patient moving doc in the ER. The situation was also exacerbated by the fact that all rooms in the hospital were full. So, while we still had to find places for new ER patients, we had to hold the ones waiting to go up. Everyone was cranky: the patients because they all had to wait for a very, very long time - no matter what situation they were in; the doctor because he was asked to work a little faster; the NP because he couldn't move his patients faster without the final stamp of approval from the doctor (remember..slow?); the nurses because we were getting grief from all sides.

While trying to appease patients with whatever I could to make their wait easier, most still snapped and snarked. After a while, I felt like John Malkovich in the break up scene from Dangerous Liaisons with Michelle Pfeiffer.

"blah, blah, is beyond my control."
"I understand you want to get your room, but there are none available right now. I will let you know when you have a room assignment. In the meantime, I'll try to make your stay in the ER as comfortable as I can."

"How long is it going to be? I don't want to stay down here."

"Blah, blah, is beyond my control."
It is beyond my control.
It is beyond my control.


  1. Bummer... "beyond my control" would be hard for me to handle. I would have a hard time not being resentful of the ER doc, too. Not to mention the scheduler.

    Reading your blog reinforces how glad I am that I rarely have to deal with the public; especially cranky ones. I am curious, though; would you say that the pts. had a legitimate beef with the hospital? It sounds like yours and theirs bad day started at a management level.

  2. If there are no beds open in the hospital, then the admitted patients are held in the ER. They have no where to go until patients are discharged from the floors. Patients are receiving the care that they need, only in the ER. So, except from not having a more comfortable bed, no, admitted patients don't have a legitimate beef IMO.

    Patients that come into the ER with minor complaints or ones that should have been treated in an urgent care facility or doctor's office should not have a beef. They decided to come to the ER instead. It's a crap shoot. If there are a lot of critical or serious patients, then those patients will take priority over the minor and wait a long, long time. When the ER is not busy with serious patients, we can get them in and out quickly.
    People think that "ER" means fast treatment....not always the case.

  3. Thank you for your detailed response. So it is another example of people making bad choices and then blaming the "not unexpected" undesirable outcome on someone else.