The Highest Priority in the Emergency Department May Be a Patient’s Spiritual Needs

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Donald D. Kautz, Associate Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: A weekend charge nurse in a 26-bed emergency department/level II trauma center is pulled in multiple directions. With alarms sounding, phones ringing, ambulances calling in, and the receptionist calling for help, it can be difficult to focus on the spiritual aspects of patients and their families. Yet, on this particular day, that was just what was most important for ?John? and his family—and he hadn’t even arrived yet. Marquette General Hospital is a regional referral center on the shores of Lake Superior, and the ED doctor had just accepted a transfer trauma patient from a hospital that was 2 hours away. John was a level I trauma transfer who had multiple injuries from a fall. He was intubated and unresponsive. He would arrive about 3:00 pm, right at the change of shift. Ruth, the charge nurse, received a call from the hospital chaplain informing her that this patient was Catholic and had not been anointed before leaving the transferring facility and that the family was very concerned about this situation.

Additional Information

Journal of Emergency Nursing
Language: English
Date: 2009
Nursing, Spirituality, Emergency Room

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