Overcrowding and Resourcing in The ER

How many of you care for patients in the ER who shouldn't really be there? At worst we're talking about psychiatric patients who sit in the ER and pose a physical threat to nurses. At best it is a drain on resources and impacts overall healthcare for those who really need it. Appropriate protocols and policies to streamline healthcare provision and ensure the right care is given to the needs of the patient are paramount elements to efficiency. When someone doesn't need to be an ER, or someone we should be transferred to another unit that can better provide for their needs isn't, everybody suffers. The issue can also lead to poor delivery of healthcare to patients who are in the wrong ward. And also as an added stress to the nurses who need to pay attention to patients maybe outside of their particular expertise. Have you encountered this is drain in your workplace?


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  2. As a crisis counselor, I am often forced to refer patients to an ER due to the lack of psych beds available in Phoenix, AZ.
    Unfortunately if a patient is a high risk of DTS/DTO (self harm or harming others due to mental illness) it is treated as a psychiatric emergency which in turn is considered a medical emergency in the scope of the ER.
    While I'm sure it's frustrating mental health is a HUGE part of the medical field. I would love other suggestions though....