THINGS YOU DON'T NEED TO GO TO THE EMERGENCY ROOM FOR, ESPECIALLY NOT AT 2AM
Alternative title: things people came to A&E for during my four-month stint as a casualty officer.
- •Your baby has a nappy rash"Ma'am this is not an emergency." - "But she's so irritable!" - yes, because it's 2AM and your baby wants to sleep!
- •You've had a headache all day, but you haven't bothered to try taking something for it.Disclaimer: some headaches are emergencies. Like thunderclap headaches, or when you've got an axe embedded in your skull.
- •Your child had one loose stool an hour agoNote: one loose stool does not a diarrhoea make.
- •Your child legitimately has diarrhoea.Is it rice-water diarrhoea (cholera)? Is your child dehydrated, lethargic, delirious? If not, it's not an emergency. Although to be fair, I'm a bit more forgiving with paediatric non-emergencies. I'd rather a parent bring their kid in too soon than too late.
- •You've developed a bed-soreBed sores need treatment. But they can wait for morning.
- •Your urine is red (and you had beetroot for supper).LOL. It can be kinda alarming.
- •Your urine is orange and you are taking TB treatment.(It's supposed to do that.)
- •Your got shot with a paintball gun and you have a sore bruise.I've played paintball. It HURTS. But... Unless it went in your eye or your throat, it's probably not an emergency.
- •Your kid pooped a worm.I know, it's pretty gross, but unless said kid is also vomiting worms and acutely ill, it can wait till normal working hours for treatment.
- •You have a cough. You have had said cough for three weeks. You are worried it may be TB. Or lung cancer.I'm worried it may be TB too (and now you've come to a full emergency room and exposed everyone to it). But you can get tested for that, and a myriad other things, during the daytime.
- •You want your IUD removed.
- •You have scabies.Scabies sucks. But it's not an emergency.