Wednesday, June 5, 2013

The Witching Hour

So, it was a slow day in the ER. It's nice to have a change of pace every once in a while. As the day went on, so did the reduction in staff. I don't understand this concept from management. On the floors, yes, no patients means literally nothing for the nurse to do except catch up on e-mails and education courses. I say let them do it and then decide. However, the ER is a different animal. At one moment you can have a few patients and the next, a bus crashes and now you have a mass casualty incident.
Now we have been severely cut back to bare bones staff. Only an hour left of the shift and if you have read my previous post, this does not mean good things for me. It's the witching hour. And that is what happened.....

I get an ambulance call, back pain x 2 weeks. Okay, I wonder why call an ambulance. I get the patient, he walks over to the stetcher without difficulty. I start to ask him questions when he interrupts me, "I'm going to the bathroom."  He pops up and walks down the hall. I'm speechless because I was in the middle of admitting him to the ER. I wait for him to come back and then ask him what happened today that made him call an ambulance to bring him to the hospital.
"Have you seen a doctor for your back since it's been a couple of weeks?"
"Okay, so you just decided to call an ambulance?"
"Yes, my son said I wouldn't have to wait if I called an ambulance."
"You realize that's not how it works, right?"
"There are not a lot of people in the ER right now, so if you had come on your own, you would have gone straight back. If we were extremely busy, then you would have gone to the lobby regardless if you had come by ambulance or not."
"Also, I want you to realize that if the insurance company does not deem your condition a medical emergency for the ambulance ride, they don't cover it."

I'm taking it one patient at a time, educating one patient at a time - like the story about the child throwing the starfish back into the ocean when someone told him that he couldn't save them all and he said, well, I can save this one. He tossed it into the water. I feel that way with the patients - one a time.

Oh, and true to tradition - 1800 - the witching hour - we got a call from the fire chief about a hazmat call - one patient and two firefighter were exposed. The hospital hazmat team was called in. Part of the ER was closed, sealed off from the rest of the hospital, hazmat suits, decon area set up, closed the ambulance bay, etc. It was a freakin' beautiful thing. I knew, KNEW this would happen when they cut our staff to bare bones. HAHA! It was classic. I guess they'll never learn......

Leibster Nominee

I just discovered that a fellow blogger, adot, , received an award called the Leibster Award. Congratulations! I recommend reading adot's blog because it contains a wealth of information that is presented in a reader friendly way. Well, also, because it's a darn interesting blog!

Since I had no clue as to what the Liebster Award is, I looked it up.

The Liebster Award is given to up and coming bloggers who have less than 200 followers. So, what is a Liebster?  The meaning: Liebster is German and means sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, and welcome. Isn't that sweet? Blogging is about building a community and it's a great way to connect with other bloggers and help spread the word about newer bloggers/blogs.

She nominated my blog and I am suppose to answer her questions posed to her nominees. So here it goes....

11 Questions They Have to Answer:
  1. Cat or Dog or Alpaca? about goldfish? It probably sounds animal unfriendly, but there's only so much poop one nurse can clean up. I'm selfish that way.
  2. Do you have any allergies?    NKDA  although I am terribly allergic to ragweed. I keep Allegra in business in the fall months. Perhaps I should buy stock options.
  3. Say you won $10 000 000 dollars, what would you do with it? (it was going to be 1 000 000, but $1 000 000 doesn’t go very far anymore)   Buy some stock in Allegra, take care of my family, give to a few charities and yes, quit my job. I would find something else to do perhaps a position where I can eat lunch and pee every once in a while. For splurging....I would travel with my hubby and kids. This is probably boring, but it's what comes to mind right now.
  4. Where is the furthest place you have traveled to?  Once summer I actually got to travel around the world: California to Japan to Singapore to Malaysia to Bahrain to Malaysia to Netherlands back to the US. It was wonderful!
  5. What is your favorite song?   It has always been Pachelbel's Canon. It broke my heart when I heard it used for a car commercial one time. Right now I really like Sail by AWOLNation.
  6. What do you spend the greatest percentage of your waking time doing: sitting, standing, or standing?  Standing, definitely standing.
  7. Would you live a year without technology?  Sure, why not? Wait, let me think about that....
  8. Do you have any piercings or tattoos or rebel-marks?  I haven't heard of rebel-marks???  I did celebrate a milestone with a tattoo. So....I got that going for me.
  9. What direction does your bedroom window face? (that wasn’t supposed to be so creepy)  North. That is a unique question!
  10. Are you aware of your own health?  I guess so....
  11. Do you have a favorite phrase or word?  For the longest time I exclaimed "Shoot a Monkey" instead of a cuss word because of my little kids. I once cussed like a sailor. They changed that for me. I guess it's now "PISS!" when something goes wrong. I didn't realize this until I heard my 9 y/o say this when she was working on a project and something went wrong. At least it wasn't shit!
Thank you, adot, for the nomination and questions!