A Stye? Oh, wait, a hordeolum...That's an Emergency!

If you come in at 01:30 by ambulance into our ED with two months of eye pain that you just couldn't take anymore with no redness/swelling/discharge/eyeballpain/changesinvision/headache/fever/chills/nausea/vomiting and bumps on both eyelids that you haven't tried anything for, well, OK...no, please, tell your son who just got home from work that he doesn't have to come get you because we can call you a cab right after we dispense your tube of erythromycin ointment. Sure, no problem.

Oh, no, don't worry, we won't bill you for the cab or the ambulance ride or the visit or the eval or the ointment or the tissues. No, no. Thanks, taxpayers. You got this one.

Six shifts, I lasted, before I got mad about misuse of the ED. Not too bad. And remember, folks...85% of patients believe they have a true emergency, even if only 5% of MDs think so.

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