Our Emergency Department: What to Expect
Vigilant Care from Humboldt General Hospital
If you're on your way to the Emergency Department, it's normal
to feel uncertain, anxious, and even fearful about what to expect when
you arrive. Below, we have broken down the intake process at our Emergency
Department so you can proceed with confidence.
Three Important Phases of Your Care
Triage: Triage is the process of determining which patients need urgent medical
attention and which ones can wait. When you arrive at our Emergency Department,
a triage nurse will listen to your medical concerns and assess your symptoms.
Registration: Following triage, a clerk will take down important information (such
as age, contact information, insurance coverage, etc.) that will help
our hospital provide the best care possible.
Medical Care: A specially trained emergency physician will discuss your symptoms and
concerns with you. Additionally, other medical personnel, such as lab
and radiology staff, may also perform diagnostic tests as needed.
Prioritizing Emergency Care
- If you notice that other patients are seen before you, the triage process
has identified that their medical concerns must take priority.
- If you believe you have been overlooked by our staff, please check in with
us. We try to keep our waiting patients updated as often as possible.
- If you believe your condition is getting worse while you wait, please check
in with us. A nurse will check you and ensure that you are not in any danger.
When You Are Admitted
Once your wait is over and our staff is ready to see you, you will be brought
into the treatment area. There, you will speak with a nurse about your
condition and concerns. A doctor will also see you, review your medical
information, and determine a course for treatment.
- Once a doctor has decided a course for treatment, he or she will discuss
it with you (if you are conscious) and forward all treatment information
to your primary care physician.
- In many cases, lab work may be called for. This often involves taking a
small blood sample and running quick tests what will help the physician
decide on your best course for treatment.
- Sometimes, you will require a short observation period to see how your
condition progresses or responds to treatment. In these cases, you will
be moved to an observation room where you will be monitored by nurses
and doctors for several hours.
- If you require extensive further treatment and observation, you may be
admitted to our hospital. Our physician will discuss the details of the
admission with you and your family and why the admission is warranted.
Your primary health care provider will also be notified of the admission.
If you do not have a primary health care provider, a doctor at Humboldt
General Hospital will be assigned to oversee your care.
What to Keep in Mind
- At Humboldt General Hospital, pain is one of our highest priorities. If
you are waiting at our Emergency Department or are already being treated
and feel that your pain has not been properly addressed by our staff,
please let our nurses and doctors know.
- Valuables should be left with a friend or family member when you are being
seen at our Emergency Department. If you have arrived alone, our staff
can keep your items in a secure storage area.
- Patients are allowed one in-room visitor at our Emergency Department (two
if the patient is a child). Our facility understands that having a loved
one close during an ER visit is important to your well-being. Unauthorized
visitors are not allowed in the treatment area and must remain in the
- Food and drink can interfere with medical care, so patients should not
expect to eat or drink anything while being treated at our Emergency Department.
Visitors are welcome to visit our cafeteria or vending machines, both
of which are located near our Emergency Department.
- Humboldt General Hospital is a medical residency hospital, which means
that both residents and medical students are frequently on hand to observe
medical services and assist our staff.
If you are permitted to go home after receiving emergency care, we will
provide you with written instructions, which will include follow-up appointment
recommendations as necessary.
If you find that your symptoms worsen once you are home, you should contact
your primary healthcare provider or return to the Humboldt General Hospital