This physician is a jack of all trades of sorts. He must be able to diagnose and treat just about whatever comes through the Emergency Department doors. He or she must remain calm in all situations and be able to direct others in the care of often critical patients. The emergency physician is capable of saving the lives of even the most traumatic of emergency cases. Heart attacks, gunshot wounds, labor and delivery, head trauma and broken bones are all part of a day’s work for the emergency physician.
Right at the ER physician’s side is the trauma nurse. She is ready to take orders at a moment’s notice. She also is trained to triage patient care, that is making decisions as to who sees the doctor first. In this day and age, the ER nurse is often a male nurse. In recent years, this has become a very attractive career for men. Often, former paramedics enter nursing school to further their careers in helping others. Male nurses are in demand because they are more often able to lift heavier patients, which in the emergency department is a plus.
Next, the emergency department has numerous other employees including x-ray technicians, medical technicians, phlebotomy techs in some hospitals, and licensed practical nurses. Often, physician’s assistants are an added bonus to the physician. Physician’s assistants, or PA’s, go beyond nursing school and can specialize in emergency medicine.
Other employees in the ER include the medical secretary, the housekeeping staff and other miscellaneous people who help to keep the ER running smoothly. It takes many people with many talents to successfully run an ER in any hospital. Medical students and nursing students do emergency room clinical rounds while in school. There is no better place to learn a medical craft than in the emergency room.
Education begins early. Most physicians attend 4 years of college and 4 years of medical school. After that, they enter into a residency for up to 12 years depending on their specialty. Surgeons, for instance, can go to school for the entire 12 years, whereas a family practice physician may attend school 3 years beyond medical school.
An Emergency Room physician has a residency that includes all areas of medicine including surgery and cardiac care medicine. Car accidents and heart attacks bring thousands of people to the ER each year, unexpected events that a trauma physician must be prepared for. It is comforting to know that these caring medical specialists are there waiting for whatever comes their way. Even an emergency C-section to deliver a baby is not out of the realm of their clinical practice. They are prepared for whatever comes their way.
In summary, emergency medicine is a very appealing profession to those who choose a high-paced job in the medical profession. Those who work together in the ER have a tight bond and work together like a well-oiled machine. Their true compassion is rewarded with the saving of lives.