Hmmm. How many cases are a waste of time (and money) during a typical shift? I am curious so I am going to take a pol. All you RN’s, EMS workers, Docs, and other health care workers, tell me how many calls/cases/visits during a typical shift. When I say waste of time, I mean a complete waste. Not something like a minor laceration or URI symptoms (which although simple to deal with, technically is not a waste if you actually perform a procedure or make a diagnosis that you can treat). Tell me what sort of things are total wastes – where literally you can do nothing for the patient but you have to spend time that could be spent accomplishing something productive. The reason I am asking is that lately I have had a run of two types of patients – those that you have real complaints, real diagnoses, and real reasons to be seen in the ER, and those that really have no business being there. These time-wasters I think are a huge percent of our visits. Perhaps 30-40 percent on some shifts. God knows how much money eliminating even half of them would save.
Floor staff that have to be evaluated in the ER to “make a report” of an incident on the floors – like a tiny scratch from a demented patient or for getting spit on by the same old demented guy. Waste of time – you don’t need to be seen in the ER to make a report – go to employee health next time they are open.
Patients who come in to be admitted for elective procedures – but insurance won’t pay for it unless it is an “emergency”.
People who need a work note when they missed work for some minor reason
Drug Seekers – don’t get me started
Young healthy psych patients who need to come in for “medical clearance” – Bah!
People who stub their toes but can still walk on them. Sorry kids, there is nothing to do except buddy tape them even if they are broken!
Nursing home patients who are DNR getting sent in to die. So the home’s in patient death rate stays low.
People with chronic medical problems who need to be seen in the ER first so they can be referred to the clinic.