In addition to examinations, consultations and procedures, treating a condition may require the monitoring of the patient’s situation at the emergency department.

Sometimes the procedures or medication take some time to take effect. It may also be necessary to monitor the progress of the patient’s symptoms to see whether they are improving or getting worse.

The monitoring stage may seem pointless to the patient, and it may feel like nothing is happening. Depending on their condition, patients wait under monitoring either in the waiting room or in a separate monitoring room. They may be lying down or seated on a chair or a wheelchair.

Patients under monitoring are on the list of patients of a doctor, which means the doctor may be seeing other patients during monitoring. The nurses keep an eye on the patients under monitoring and report any changes in their condition to the doctor in charge of their care.

Patients are also welcome to address to the nurses if they notice a change in their condition, including when the treatment they have received is effective and they are feeling better.

Follow Mikko at the emergency department

Mikko is back in his bed. He has just been to the ultrasound scan on his abdomen and is waiting for the results. The pain medication has kicked in and Mikko feels much better.

Mikko is not alone in the monitoring room. Patients come and go, as the time passes. Nurses walk up and down the corridor and occasionally one pops their head through the curtain to ask how Mikko is feeling. Mikko hears the voice of his doctor calling in other patients.

The nurse arrives to change the drip. Mikko looks at his watch. He has been at the emergency department for four hours. Mikko thinks this is quite a long time and asks the nurse why things are taking so long.

The nurse points out that Mikko has undergone quite extensive tests and examinations and his condition has been constantly monitored and his pain has been successfully managed. The doctor will be with Mikko soon to talk about the findings of the ultrasound scan, which will hopefully reveal the cause of the pain. When the nurse puts it like that, Mikko realises the wait has not been time wasted.

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Updated  1.5.2021