The department has a dedicated Security Officer on duty 24 hours a day 7days a week with speedy back up available from the main security departments at all times. The department is completely covered by CCTV at all times and staff have available to them Personal Alarms which can be carried on their person and which feature tracking devices and instant back up support. Verbal aggression or violence towards any member of staff will not be tolerated in the Emergency Department.
Access to the department is covered by Swipe Access and is strictly curtailed.
The department operates a strict visiting policy of one visitor per patient (for reasons of patient privacy, confidentiality and safety, generally only one person is permitted to accompany patients into the treatment area) though we do appreciate that this is not always possible due to the circumstances that pertain in a busy emergency department.
The ED has dedicated number of Portering staff assigned to the unit. They undertake a wide range of duties and can be identified quite easily by their uniform. They provide an important role in the movement of patients within the department and further a field when patients are being transferred to wards around the hospital.
The department has a dedicated Housekeeping staff who are responsible for all the various housekeeping duties that you will find in a busy Emergency Department. As you might appreciate the department is cleaned thoroughly on an ongoing basis (with very high Hygiene standards being required). The housekeeping staff also cater for the culinary needs of our patients and we have a small kitchen to provide snacks and beverages for patients.
Health Care Assistants
The role of the Health Care Assistant is to support the delivery of patient care under the supervision and direction of qualified nursing personnel (Shannon et al., 2001).
The recognised qualification for Health Care Assistants is the FETAC (NCVA Level 5) Healthcare Support Certificate.
Patients/clients may require assistance in some or all activities of daily living. It is the duty of the nurse to assess, plan, implement and evaluate the care required by the patient. The primary role of the Health Care Assistant is to assist the nurse in the implementation of the care, as determined by the Registered Nurse.
The Administrative service in the department is divided into three key areas:
Every patient that attends the Emergency Department must be registered before they are seen by the triage nurse. The reception desk is located in the main waiting area inside the entrance to the department. Patients are directed to the reception area on arrival. A receptionist is on duty 24 hours a day to greet the patient and collect essential registration information. Details will include particulars such as name, date of birth, address, name of general practitioner, contact phone number, next of kin etc.
If the patient has previously attended the emergency department previous medical records will be retrieved so that all relevant information is available. On completion of registration, the patient will be directed to Triage.
As per Department of Health & Children legislation -statutory instrument 37/94 health (outpatient charges) regulations 1994- all patients attending the Emergency Department are liable to a € 100 charge per episode of care unless they are exempt under various categories.
Most patients (70%) that attend the emergency department will be discharged following treatment, but the other 30% will be admitted to a ward for further treatment. Again the admission of a patient is a key element of the work of the Administrative staff and requires a team effort from all the other disciplines to provide a smooth transfer of patients from the emergency department to a ward.
In a busy Emergency department there is always lots of correspondence incoming and outgoing that our secretarial staff have to deal with.
The Service also has a Team Leader who is in charge of the Administrative function on the ground and they are available to answer any queries that you may have in relation to the above areas.
The department provides the services of a Patient Liaison Officer (mornings only Monday- Friday) who can assist you attending at the emergency department with any queries you may have outside of the clinical areas.