Phone Triage, Yuk Phooey! Most Hospitals I work at, have very strict Guidelines that must be followed. Trouble is, Hospital Policy does nothing to actually protect the individual, who gets stuck answering the call. For "Hotlips" are you aware that nurses have been sued, for telling people to come to the E.R. but not telling them to use 911 to activate EMS?? I do not know the actual details, or the outcome of that occurrence, but it does show that there is indeed Danger, in telling someone to come to the hospital. One scripted response I work with(per Hospital Policy) states, "I'm sorry Sir/Madam, but we cannot give medical advise over the telephone, would you like us to send an ambulance? This invariably leads to frustration, on the part of the caller, and has to be repeated several times. All to often their next question is "How long will we have to wait, if we come there?" When you tell them that you cannot estimate the time factor, without assessing the patient, the next sound we hear is a click followed by a dial tone. Even if you try to help as much as possible, with the proper responses, they may deny you gave those responses, and state to an administrator or Hospital Representative, that the nurse on the phone was Rude to them, because they wouldn't answer their questions! Bottom line, there is no absolute, sure-fire, way to handle telephone calls, no matter what you do, someone will surely take exception to your responses because you didn't tell them what they wanted to hear. I would be interested to hear from, a telephone triage nurse from Kaiser Permanente, or any other Insurance company nurses that do this type work daily. Any help they might offer would be beneficial, to this discussion.