Does anyone else do this?

  1. Recently, our facility's website began offering the option to "talk to a nurse" via e-mail. We are receiving lots of questions. I find it quite interesting & challenging.

    I was just wondering if anyone else is doing this in addition to their usual triage/call center duties.

    Expanding my horizons...as usual!
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  2. 17 Comments

  3. by   Shamrock
    This is the first I've heard of it but sounds
    like a good way to educate the public.
  4. by   Nurse Ratched
    Our clinic does a thing through the health and wellness dept for general questions. They like it because it gives them a chance to think about the question rather than be put in the imagined placed of having to answer right away as in face-to-face or telephone questions.

    Plus, our patient population (1) lives on the computer and (2) may have embarrassing questions that they don't want to ask aloud.

    Sounds like a neat thing for you .
  5. by   Audreyfay
    I haven't heard of this being offered before, but my work e-mail address is on my cards and is open anytime to patients I see in my other practice (diabetes education).
  6. by   teeituptom
    Never heard of it before Scary
  7. by   renerian
    Wow that sounds like fun!

    renerian
  8. by   eltrip
    Thanks for reading!
    Yes, it is both scary & fun. We have our guidelines through our software...but then, a great deal relies upon both reading comprehension as well as nursing judgement. Quite challenging!
  9. by   Going80INA55
    We actually do this at our site as well. We have done this for 2 yrs or more, it is just in the last 6-8 months that we actually have more and more computer savvy people utilizing the system.

    I have found the majority of them on the site are very versed on their disease process and are asking for info to supplement their own. Clearly we are not triaging via email.
  10. by   eltrip
    Originally posted by Going80INA55
    We actually do this at our site as well. We have done this for 2 yrs or more, it is just in the last 6-8 months that we actually have more and more computer savvy people utilizing the system.

    I have found the majority of them on the site are very versed on their disease process and are asking for info to supplement their own. Clearly we are not triaging via email.
    I am so glad to know that we're not the only ones out there! (We're "out there," but that's another story! ) We're usually directing folks to their docs...with several variations on that theme.
  11. by   homesick honey
    on the labour ward where i worked we always asked patients/clients to ring us before they came into the department. we triaged them over the phone and adviced as we saw fit. some interesting conversations but on the whole it works really well.
  12. by   Going80INA55
    Yes, we too, seem to direct the patients to talk the md for the triage piece.

    However, we are also searching for opportunities to teach on the call, whether it be about a chronic disease process or an acute event.

    We strive to create or enhance communication between the md and patient. Many will state a need, but don't know how to communicate this to the md. We will help them phrase questions and let them know which questions are priority.

    We don't want someone going into the md with 50 questions, that is not fair to the md or the patient.

    We also help them navigate through the health care system. It is very confusing for elders to have 3 Md's following their case. We will tell them why each is important and what they can expect for care from each. Type of tests, what they do etc.

    I really like my job I don't see myself leaving for a really long while.
  13. by   StreetRN
    Our hospital has a website. People can post non urgent questions and they are forwarded to us. We respond via e-mail. It's a different approach, but works. Sometimes, due to the nature of the question, the triage nurses will ask the person to call in to discuss the issue further.
  14. by   Audreyfay
    I recently was on a "Ask the Healthcare Professional" call in night on the local network. I answered a few phone calls, but the more interesting calls were the ones via e-mail. It was quite interesting the questions people asked. I actually thought it was better because it was easier to answer the question succinctly. There also was the opportunity to select which question I was most comfortable answering. (Actually, I answered the questions that the MDs wouldn't )

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