Eat Before You Get Here! - page 4

WHY is it that as soon as people step one foot into the ER, they suddenly are overcome with hunger and thirst? Now I can understand if the patient is admitted and has been there all day and has eaten... Read More

  1. by   Jeanine
    When I was in the ER, our hospital believed that it was good customer service to have a stocked refridge for the patients or their families. We had an ER Tech go to the kitchen each shift and get a variety of cereals, sandwiches, drinks, and snacks to keep everyone happy. The staff would even eat them on occasion if we couldn't get out of the unit to eat. I'm sure those sandwiches kept some of us from passing out when we were really busy! It is a little absurd though. The "regulars" would always come in for a meal if they were too cold outside, too hungry, or too intoxicated! They were always too smelly though.
  2. by   Betty_SPN_KS
    This reminds me of a clinical day in my peds rotation. A young child was NPO or on clear liquids (can't remember for sure), and the family was in there eating hamburgers and french fries. The kid was upset because he couldn't have what they were having.
  3. by   z's playa
    Quote from Betty_SPN_KS
    This reminds me of a clinical day in my peds rotation. A young child was NPO or on clear liquids (can't remember for sure), and the family was in there eating hamburgers and french fries. The kid was upset because he couldn't have what they were having.
    Freaking A he was upset...how inconsiderate.
  4. by   teeituptom
    welcome to the wonderfull world of er nursing

    gotta love it
  5. by   Snowy
    Quote from veetach
    I believe that somewhere in this society of needy, greedy, demanding people, there is a law that, upon arrival in the ER for that "emergent" sore throat or finger pain, then you must do the following:

    1. ask for a meal. Everyone knows the ER is just like a fancy restaurant and serves the fanciest of gourmet foods.
    Either a kudo's to the food services of hospitals nationwide is in order, meaning the food has gotten better compared to the bland yicky stuff I've heard people complain about from years ago, or these patients have never been to a fancy resturant and really have that bad of taste

    Quote from veetach
    4. Go pee. This is a very serious demand, especially if you are brought in to the ER on a back board from a low speed MVA.
    It's simply amazing how the offer of a folley changes their mind.

    Quote from veetach
    5. complain that the nurses are laughing. OMG they should NEVER laugh. there are SICK people here .
    "Nor should they ever post anything in a forum or some lay person might be offended"
  6. by   Streamlined
    When I worked med/surg, part of my assessment process included checking for the menu/TV sign. If the patient asked about how to work the TV and/or asked for a menu within the first five minutes of his arrival to the unit, that constituted the "positive menu/TV" sign and he prompty assumed a lower number on my priority list.
  7. by   BabyRN2Be
    Quote from Streamlined
    When I worked med/surg, part of my assessment process included checking for the menu/TV sign. If the patient asked about how to work the TV and/or asked for a menu within the first five minutes of his arrival to the unit, that constituted the "positive menu/TV" sign and he prompty assumed a lower number on my priority list.
    Oh wow, that's good - that's all I've got to say!
  8. by   Darlene K.
    Quote from ERNurse752
    "Take your pick...crackers or belly button lint..."

    Best line I ever heard, from one of our old medics.

    Hmmmmmm! Does that come with a pepsi too!
  9. by   career2
    HelloOO Its an EMERGENCY!! Part 1

    Sorry I did not plan to fracture my ankle ahead of time so I could eat first! Next I waited 8 hours before I saw a nurse! My waiting room buddies included dangerous schizophrenics as well as incontinent people pissing on my chair. Did I come here because my Doctor ordered me to? No, I just like to annoy the nurses!

    A Patient
    Alta Bates ER, Berkeley, CA


    Quote from TerraRN
    WHY is it that as soon as people step one foot into the ER, they suddenly are overcome with hunger and thirst? Now I can understand if the patient is admitted and has been there all day and has eaten nothing. But I don't understand how when someone comes in at 10:30 at night they IMMEDIATELY ask for food and drink because they haven't eaten all day. They have had the entire day to eat.Its not my fault that they didn't eat at home. I don't know how many signs are posted stating "no eating or drinking until evaluation is complete". Then again we have I don't know how many RESTRICTED AREA signs and people ignore those too. The other day I needed to use a bedside table but there was a tray on it so I asked the young lady if she was finished. And she said(snottily)" THAT was lunch. I didn't even GET dinner, yet." She was NOT an admitted pt. Matter of fact she was discharged an hour later. Does this happen everywhere? :uhoh21:
  10. by   career2
    I worked a 12 hour day without time to eat! Yes, other people besides nurses have high stress jobs. As I came home my two year old started projectile vomiting with green stuff coming out her nose! Next I waited an hour at the Childrens Hospital Oakland ER with no sign of any help or evaluation! My daughter spewing green stuff out her nose onto the floor in front of the nurses desk made no impression! I left Oakland drove the kid to John Muir ER in Walnut Creek! They were great. I watched her stop spewing vomit for the first time in three hours as they put a dose of phenergan in her vein. They admitted us to the pediatric ward. I got a few hours sleep on the floor next to her bed. Now 24 hours without food Im getting a little hungry. The kid is happy now. She is spinning around in circles trying to pull the IV out of her arm. The nurses do nothing to stop this. I ask them to take the IV out and they say nothing. They dont refuse or explain they just look at me and walk away. I have had no food for 30 hours! Excuse me I should know to EAT BEFORE I COME HERE! Or maybe I just have bad habits cause IM A MENTAL CASE!! MAYBE I USED MY WELFARE CHECK TO BY BOOZE AND CIGARETTES!

    If you really feel this way about your patients you need to find another line of work.



    Quote from LPN2Be2004
    I am outraged. I CANNOT believe that your ER does NOT have a meal waiting for your guests, or a McDonlad's in the waiting area! :roll
  11. by   Deb123j
    I'm not a nurse yet, and I know that you'all have seen lots of things that I haven't...however...when my son was younger and we would go to the er (he has asthma) generally it would take hours to get admitted and upstairs (I now understand why!). So generally when we got up to the floor and in his room, he was usually hungry (so was I for that matter), so we would ask the nurse for something for HIM to eat (I figure I'm an adult, I can wait). The nurses were always very nice and I didn't think that we were annoying them with the request.

    Just my $0.02
  12. by   ayndim
    Quote from career2
    I worked a 12 hour day without time to eat! Yes, other people besides nurses have high stress jobs. As I came home my two year old started projectile vomiting with green stuff coming out her nose! Next I waited an hour at the Childrens Hospital Oakland ER with no sign of any help or evaluation! My daughter spewing green stuff out her nose onto the floor in front of the nurses desk made no impression! I left Oakland drove the kid to John Muir ER in Walnut Creek! They were great. I watched her stop spewing vomit for the first time in three hours as they put a dose of phenergan in her vein. They admitted us to the pediatric ward. I got a few hours sleep on the floor next to her bed. Now 24 hours without food Im getting a little hungry. The kid is happy now. She is spinning around in circles trying to pull the IV out of her arm. The nurses do nothing to stop this. I ask them to take the IV out and they say nothing. They dont refuse or explain they just look at me and walk away. I have had no food for 30 hours! Excuse me I should know to EAT BEFORE I COME HERE! Or maybe I just have bad habits cause IM A MENTAL CASE!! MAYBE I USED MY WELFARE CHECK TO BY BOOZE AND CIGARETTES!

    If you really feel this way about your patients you need to find another line of work.
    I stayed in the hospital for 5 days with my daughter. The staff was great. Because I was bf I got a tray at meal times. I was in the er for hours with her. I also had not eaten for 12+ hours. You know what I did. When she was settled in I let the nurse know I was going to the cafeteria to bring some food up for me (dd was only 9 mos old and vomitting so none for her). The nurse and aide kept checking on her while I was gone for the 15 mins. There were also snack machines just outside the doors to the patient area. Also, after having my 3rd child I was starving. I told the pp nurse and she asked me if I wanted a tray sent up. I said no I would go get it myslef. She gave me a voucher and wheeled the little baby bassinet out by the station (it's a small hospital and was very quite). I don't see why if a pt (if medically/physically able) or family member is hungry they can't go get it themselves. I did and will always do so. Nurses aren't waitresses (BTW I am only a student) they are medical professionals and aren't there to wait on people and have more important things to do besides get people food and fluff pillows.
  13. by   Stitchie
    Quote from career2
    I worked a 12 hour day without time to eat! Yes, other people besides nurses have high stress jobs. As I came home my two year old started projectile vomiting with green stuff coming out her nose! Next I waited an hour at the Childrens Hospital Oakland ER with no sign of any help or evaluation! My daughter spewing green stuff out her nose onto the floor in front of the nurses desk made no impression! I left Oakland drove the kid to John Muir ER in Walnut Creek! They were great. I watched her stop spewing vomit for the first time in three hours as they put a dose of phenergan in her vein. They admitted us to the pediatric ward. I got a few hours sleep on the floor next to her bed. Now 24 hours without food Im getting a little hungry. The kid is happy now. She is spinning around in circles trying to pull the IV out of her arm. The nurses do nothing to stop this. I ask them to take the IV out and they say nothing. They dont refuse or explain they just look at me and walk away. I have had no food for 30 hours! Excuse me I should know to EAT BEFORE I COME HERE! Or maybe I just have bad habits cause IM A MENTAL CASE!! MAYBE I USED MY WELFARE CHECK TO BY BOOZE AND CIGARETTES!

    If you really feel this way about your patients you need to find another line of work.

    Well, I'm not going to get another line of work anytime soon (i hope) but what some people need to realize is that when people come in not breathing, no pulse, chest pain, etc., they take priority. So perhaps you will understand when I say the best I can do is crackers and water or juice, take your pick. I'd love to treat me patients to 5 star meals. Our hospital doesn't have the means to. Those bland turkey sandwiches, if any, will go to someone who is staying in the hospital. Your fractured ankle, I realize, is painful, and if it's really bad may require surgery, but that also means you do not get to eat.

    If you're in an ER with a fractured ankle, that large portable red cart is not for you, hopefully, and I trust that you'll understand when people are running to get that large red portable cart it is because someone's heart has stopped or is stopping, and perhaps that isn't what they ordered that day. Therefore they take priority over a fractured ankle. Uncomfortable, I know, inconvenient, I realize, but we must prioritize. It's the hardest thing to do at work.

    I try to offer patients meals if medically appropriate. Pt coming in w/pancreatitis, who are almost always alcoholics, who say "I haven't eaten in days because I'm vomiting so much" do not get the bland turkey sandwich and weird colored jello from the ER fridge. Know why? Because they are vomiting and have pancreatitis. It isn't because we're mean, nasty nurses or we don't feel like feeding our patients. It isn't because we don't like drunks (but we don't like drunks). It's because there's a medical protocol to be followed and that means NPO.

    I'm glad your child is better. But try to be cognizant of the fact that a nurse's job is to care for her patient's medical needs first and foremost. Yes, that includes eating, but it is important to bear in mind that the ER is not a giant cafeteria with free demerol, codeine, valium and bland, bad turkey sandwiches.

    JMHO, if you need to eat while your child is sick, ask the nurse, NM, or unit secretary what suggestions they may have for you. You may be pleasantly surprised that they will ask for a guest tray for you, or direct you to the cafeteria while they pay extra special attention to your child while you are gone.

    I'm sorry that you had a bad experience while your child was sick. But ER nurses have difficult jobs, and feeding those who are 'with it' enough to demand food of the nursing staff (like those who come in with constipation x 2 days) just aren't the priority.

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