Monday, February 7, 2011

Apparently, we're whack

So, I'm stuck in triage the other day in my little booth of shame when I hear this conversation go down at the check in desk.
Dude with oozy but manageable head lac -"Yeah, I need to see the doctor."
Medic-"What's going on today sir?"
Head lac dude-"Well, I was at the club, and I got into a fight with some dudes and I need to have the doctor to come up here and look at me and tell me if I need stitches."
Medic-"Well, take this form here and sign in and the nurse will get you triaged."
Head lac dude who reeks of booze- "Naw, I don't wanna do all that shit. Just go get the doctor right quick so he can tell me if I need stitches."
Medic-"Sir, the doctors are with critical patients. I can't just pull them out of a CPR to come tell you whether or not you need stitches. If you would like to be seen, you have to wait like everyone else."
Head lac dude-"Man, that's some BULLSHIT. I just want him to tell me whether or not I need stitches. That's whack, man. Can you tell me if I need stitches?"
Medic-"Sir, I am not a doctor, and I cannot diagnose you. You'll have to check in. Also, if you would please stop yelling obscenities. You're scaring our other patients."
Idiot head lac dude- (gesturing to his friend) "Man, gimmie that form. Here, I'll be back, I gotta go drop off my homeboy but you go ahead and get me in line."
Medic-"You can't do that here. I can't check you in if you're about to leave. Either stay or go, but I can't put you in line if you're leaving. This is not a doc in the box."
HLD- (Surveying medic in attempt to be gangster, but with vacant drunk eyes). Man. Man. That's not cool man. You got all these tattoos and stuff all out everywhere. That's whack. You whack. (leaves without checking in).

Approximately 5 hours later, I grab a chart from the triage rack and call the patient's name. To my surprise, as I'm not behind in triage, I get no answer. I start looking around and I see the other patients gesturing to a young man leaning back in his chair snoring. I shrug and skip to the next person. Sorry, if you're asleep and obviously still breathing, I'm not gonna wake you up to triage you. Obviously it's not that big of an emergency. So, I triage a little baby with a fever which takes all of about 4 minutes, and when I go to let them back out in the waiting room I see the dude awake and irate, standing at the front desk yelling at the new medic on shift. I walk up and tell him very calmly, "Sir, I already tried calling you but you didn't answer. Are you awake and ready to be triaged now?" At that point I realize it's the same fool from earlier. So began the triage process.
Me- Sooo. What brings you in today?
Head Lac Patient- Yeah, well, earlier, I fought some dudes and I cut my head and now I'm here. I need to lay down, man.
Me-Yeah, you can't do that in here. Have you been drinking tonight sir?
Head Lac Patient- Yuh. I need to lay down, you whack.
Me-How much have you had to drink tonight?
HLP- Too much.
Me- How much is too much? Too much for me and too much for you are probably different.
HLP- Um, like 12 or 20.
Me- Really? Wow. Let's just move on. You say this happened earlier? When is earlier?
HLP- Like, midnight. Yeah. (continually touching his clotted head wound) It keeps bleedin'.
Me- Well, yeah, it does when you keep touching it. What have you been doing the last 5 hours?
HLP- You know, drivin around. I had to drop off my homeboy.
Me- Did you drink some more?
HLP- I dunno. That's how I do. It helps me get through the day.
Me- I see. Excellent. Well, I think that will be all. Have a seat out in the waiting room for me there.
HLP- Miss, I wanna lay down. Do I need stitches? Am I gonna have to wait much longer?
Me- I really don't know sir. Just have a seat out there and relax for me.
HLP- Man, for real miss? You whack. Ya'll are all whack.

And to think they sent out a Press Ganey card for that visit. I wonder what whack translates to on a zero to five score.


  1. Just look at it this way: on a scale of 1-10, you all wouldn't have scored an 11. On the bright side, he won't remember this at all!

  2. Press Ganey. Well if I have nothing nice to say about them then I will say nothing.