History of the Emergency Room
The first emergency room opened up in 1911 as an accident service for specialized trauma care. It was located at the University Of Louisville Hospital in Louisville, Kentucky and was later improved with the help of Arnold Griswold, a professor and chair of the University of Louisville Department of Surgery. Not only did Griswold supply police vehicles with medical supplies and trained doctors how to give care while in route to the accident service location, he developed the practice of autotransfusion and established the first blood bank in Louisville. To better train doctors for the settings in an emergency room, John Hopkins University began a two-year Emergency Medicine residency program in 1974, and the program was lengthened to a three-year program in 1987. The Department of Emergency Medicine became its own department within the School of Medicine by 1994.
Tools The Emergency Room Uses
The most important tool that the emergency room services provide is practicing triage. Triage is how an emergency room decides whose emergency is the most serious. The word triage is based out of the French verb trier which means to separate, sift or select. If you arrive at an emergency room on an ambulance, the staff will have been notified about your condition from the ambulance crew and will already have your bed arranged or will be preparing to receive you. If you show up on your own, the staff will do their initial check-up to determine how serious your injury is. From there, they determine where your place is in line and get to you as they can.
The tools they use are common in your doctor’s office or an urgent care office but some are only available in an emergency room.
- Stethoscope: This tool allows you to hear your heartbeat and respiratory sounds and is very common around medical staff collars.
- Suture Tray: Stitches are a common service performed and this tray holds all the equipment needed for doing just that.
- Crash Cart: This cart contains all the equipment needed if a patient’s heart stops beating.
- Cardiac monitor: A monitor that displays your heart rhythm and alarms are set off if your rhythm is slower or faster than it should be.
Specialists who work in emergency rooms
There is a wide range of skills one must have to work in an emergency room. There are several positions that must be filled to have the patient taken care of quickly without loss of life. Here are several types of jobs that are included in the emergency room services:
- Emergency Medical Physician or Urgent Care Physician: A person that is certified licensed that assesses and treat patients
- Trauma Surgeon: One that specializes in treating those who have life-threatening trauma that jeopardizes multiple organs and formulates a surgical plan to save that life.
- Medical Technician: A worker who collects bodily fluids such as blood, urine, and wound drainage. They then test the fluids in a laboratory according to the orders from the doctor.
- Emergency Medical Technician: Although they are not based out of an emergency room, they need to be able to communicate with the emergency room staff the history of the patient. If they are not through with their job, the patient may not make it to the hospital alive, so their work is very important.
- Nurse Practitioner: While on duty and reporting to an attending physician, this type of nurse practitioner can also evaluate patients, order films, fill prescriptions and treat patients. This position requires a Masters with a certification as a Certified Registered Nurse Practitioner and is an advanced level of nursing.
- Radiologist: There are several types of tools that a radiologist uses to treat and diagnose patients such as x-rays, ultrasounds, CT. Scans, PET scans, mammography and MRI.
- Radiology Technician: Works closely with the radiologist and the physician by prepping the patient for the procedure, letting the patient know what the procedure will be like, and use the appropriate protection for the patient and themselves from unwanted exposure of radiation.
- Respiratory Therapist: Works with patients that are having issues breathing. This can include heart attack, and stroke victims that may be a type of life support ventilation.
Advancements in technology in emergency rooms
Emergency room services have come a long way and continue to get better. At St. Mary Medical Center, they have technology stand in line for you, saving you from having to sit in a waiting room with other injured or sick people. If you have a non-life-threatening, debilitating or emergent medical complaint, you can check into the E.R on a site called InQuicker. The program you an estimated time for you to be seen and will contact you by phone or email if there are any delays. Once you are a patient, the emergency room services continue to advance to get you the best care available. An instant portable ultrasound is able to come to you and quickly give a diagnosis on your stomach pain or heart palpitations. Medical records are electronic which allows doctors to view and diagnose you quicker and more accurately. Bluetooth technology isn’t just for your phone. Equipment with Bluetooth allows medical professionals to move you around the E.R. without worrying about the weight of the wires and the hassle of keeping them untangled. Video laryngoscopes make intubating easier and quicker. That means less stress for the patients and the doctors. Some patients have low blood pressure and getting the fluids they need through an i.v. can be difficult. The EZ-IO vascular drill allows you to enter the bone instead and deliver the medication and fluid without poking the patient multiple times unsuccessfully.
Emergency treatment in the military and civilian worlds
Emergency room services in the military differ from that in the civilian world in that they have personnel that is trained in a specialized military school. This training allows them a wide variety of skills that they will need to perform in a military setting. They are the swiss army knife of medical personnel in that they can perform the duties of a doctor, nurse, orthopedic, respiratory therapist, and more. They can cauterize wounds, intubate, splint broken bones, and can prescribe medicine. This type of training allows the workload”Modern of other nurses and doctors to be reduced. In the civilian setting, you may be seen by 5 different people for your one emergency. Each one has gone through a specific training to be able to treat you but may have a limited knowledge that requires them to get assistance from another associate.