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How to survive long waits in Emergency Departments?

A friend of mine was recently involved in a minor accident which involved him heading to the emergency department (or A+E) of a local hospital. He had injured himself which was in no way life threating but was in need of medical attention nonetheless.

He had never been to an emergency department previous and had no idea in what to expect.

After an 8 hour wait in the emergency room he was finally seen to and was treated with 4 stitches in his upper arm which took about 10 minutes to complete.

During his time in the hospital he rang me around 4 hours through his stay and asked me could I drop him up a pair of comfortable bottoms, something to eat and a warm jumper. The reason behind his request was he arrived into the hospital wearing jeans and a t-shirt and an empty stomach, he was subsequently feeling cold, uncomfortable and hungry.

As somebody who has been in the emergency department on many previous occasions with injuries through sport I knew exactly how he felt. I also knew exactly what to expect!

He had no idea what to assume (i.e long waits in an uncomfortable environment with a lack of food) and actually noted to me that he had searched the internet to seek information on what to bring and what to expect. He found no results.

Therefore I thought it would be a good idea for people to share their experiences of long waits in the emergency department and how they best dealt with it and if they had do it again, what they do differently.

I will then re-write a final piece of people's recommendations and it will be freely available along with this post for people to search in case they are ever caught in a situation similar to that of my friend.

It also lays bare the fact had he been willing to depart with a substantial amount of money he would have been seen far quicker in a private practice.

This outlining the current situation in the Irish healthcare system that those with more money are treated much quicker in a private clinic and are not subjected to the harrowing experiences of public emergency departments.
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replied March 1st, 2014
Extremely eHealthy
Those with a surplus of money and a willingness to spend it will usually be able to find preferential treatment wherever in the world they find themselves.

What little I know of Ireland, things are set to worsen as the government there is desperate to cut costs and (covertly) increase taxes as much as possible.

I have never had such a long stay at our local A&E in the Midlands of England but being a people-watcher and a person with an opinion about most things and not in the least shy about sharing with others I don't think 8 hours would be long enough to reach the point of boredom.
I can easily lose a couple of hours simply watching clouds and being lost somewhere in my own head. If all else fails I can sleep almost anywhere anytime.
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Users who thank verne01 for this post: BHSFINALY 

replied March 4th, 2014
Thanks for the reply,

Well 8 hours is tip of the ice berg, reports of 24 hours waits in A+E are well reported in Ireland.

The thread was started just to see if people had similar experiences and if they did, how they best dealt with the long waits!
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