What will the triage nurse do when I go to the emergency room (ER)?

Lisa Moment
Lisa Moment on behalf of Sigma Nursing

The term triage actually means "to sort." The triage nurse will get a short history from you about your symptoms, when the symptoms started, your drug allergies and current medications. The triage nurse will also get a set of vital signs which will include a temperature, blood pressure, heart rate, respiratory rate, and oxygen saturation.

The triage nurse, based on your complaint and what your vital signs are, will determine where the most appropriate place in the emergency room is. Many emergency rooms have a "fast track" where patients may be sent if they have illnesses that can be assessed and treated quickly. Otherwise, if the patient will possibly need a work-up with labs, x-rays, IV fluids, etc., the patient will be triaged into a room in the emergency department where higher acuity, or more complex, complaints are sent.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.