Eat Before You Get Here! - page 12

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   Dean5416
    Where I work the two basic needs when being brought into the room are: "Can I get a meal, and do you have cab vouchers"? I think its hilarious, yet sad.
  2. by   RN_in_SC
    I work in an ER. Yes, it does get VERY annoying having to explain to patients (who have only been back in a room less than an hour) that we do NOT have hot meal service like "the rest of the floors" because we are an EMERGENCY ROOM.

    And yes, I love it when the diabetics tell me they have not eaten all day and NEED to eat. Also, esp the younger diabetics will not take water or diet soda - they want regular soda, even when they are in the ER for hyperglycemia! (wonder why!)

    Late at night we do get cold lunch boxes for patients who have been there all day and are waiting all night for a bed upstairs. god forbid anyone else sees these. I had a fellow I was trying to discharge insist that he was basically owed a meal before he left because another patient (who had been there 6 hours and was waiting for a bed) had gotten a cold sandwich.

    I think a patient's wife almost punched me once over the food issue. She was complaining about when her husband would be released and she hadn't eaten all day and she was a diabetic, yadda yadda yadda

    And in all innocence and sincerity (REALLY) I said "Well, there is cafeteria across the hall".

    At that moment I realized she was debating lunging at me - so I quick turned on heels and walked out of the room.


    Then (if I make the mistake of telling anyone we have some food) people don't want our crackers, soup, water, etc. It's not good enough for them. Don't you have any so-and-so (insert food item here). No, we are an ER not the grocery store.

    Note to future patients:
    PACK A LUNCH before you come in, 90% aren't that sick where this would be an issue.
    Family members: feel free to go out to the 12 fast food restaurants within 3 blocks of our hospital and have dinner and then come back, trust me, your loved one will still be there - and if they are allowed to eat - bring them something back.

    When I am trying to assess a patient and they start complaining about how they haven't eaten in 4 hours (?) - I tell them, "yeah I know - I haven't eaten in 20 hours, what's your complaint?"
    Last edit by RN_in_SC on Mar 12, '09
  3. by   chickapea
    This thread just reminded me that when I had my second daughter it was late at night and the nurse offered me her turkey sandwich and chips. I said oh no, but thank you and she insisted. Then I realized how hungry I actually was and took her up on it. How sweet is that!! Loved her!
  4. by   loricatus
    Quote from jemb
    When I worked the floor, this was always an issue. Patients would be admitted late evening, asking for food and saying they hadn't eaten all day. Sometimes they would add, "I'm diabetic so I have to eat." (So why have you not eaten all day????)
    Got so sick of the diabetic line or the hypoglycemia line that I resorted to carrying sugar packets and hand them one or two to lick on while they wait.
  5. by   MikeyBSN
    This is the best topic ever. I honestly don't understand what some of the patients are thinking. I'm pretty sure that sign says "Emergency" not "McDondald's." You're in so much pain that you need to lay in a stretcher but you want a sandwich?
  6. by   MikeyBSN
    Quote from loricatus
    Got so sick of the diabetic line or the hypoglycemia line that I resorted to carrying sugar packets and hand them one or two to lick on while they wait.
    Nice, I've noticed that some of the patients lie to the floor nurse. They tell the floor nurse that they didn't eat all day and the floor nurses would call us and yell. Now I document every time I give anyone food, despite whether they are diabetic or not.