Friday, April 3, 2009
Bjorn Johnson Appears On ER As Joel Cohen M.D. Writes About Real Life ER Protocols For Patients
Perhaps most of America tuned into ER last night for the final episode. For me, an old friend Bjorn Johnson was to have a small role as the parent of a child who was in a coma due to alcohol consumption. For those of you unfamiliar with Bjørn, he gained a cult like following for his portrayal of Mr. Schniedelwichsen in Beerfest. Bjorn is probably best known for his stage work and his directing. While his role last night was relatively small, I suspect it was a huge honor to join the cast in their final performance. Originally, the intent was to write a story about alcohol abuse and its danger in teens. (It's dangerous kids, don't do it. If a friend is drunk, passed out, throwing up, get your friend to a hospital immediately. The delay can be fatal or cause brain damage.) With that being said, given so much discussion of hospital emergency rooms, it was thought best to share with a book written by Joel Cohen, MD.
Cohen is the author of ER: Enter at Your Own Risk -- How to Avoid Dangers Inside Emergency Rooms. Dr. Cohen shares why you should research several local emergency rooms before you ever need to visit one. The book outlines six tips that will get you better treatment in any emergency room. He also shares what injuries and diseases are best handled outside the emergency room. Cohen recognizes that today's emergency rooms are overcrowded due to hospital economics and lack of insurance. Dr. Cohen shares his perspective of how to protect yourself against the dangers of the ER.
One of Cohen's suggestions is to go to an emergency room only if your symptoms prevent daily routines. A second is to always visit the ER with a companion if possible. The third suggestion is to always be polite but yet still firm. Under no circumstances should you be confrontational. That is a battle that you will always lose. Fourth, ask the right questions of the triage nurse, staff nurse and ER doctor. Fifth, refuse any treatments or tests that you think are unnecessary, irrelevant, or potentially more dangerous than valuable until you have the opportunity to discuss them with your private physician.
The book also contains some Web sites that you can visit for basic medical information. Our suggestion is to start with Google, Ask.com and Medline. And of course, ask Dr. B. on Legal Pub.