What to Expect

Admission and Discharge

Depending on your ongoing condition after examination and treatment, you can either be admitted to the hospital for further observation and treatment or be discharged. Before you leave the hospital, ask questions, read and understand all your discharge instructions, fill and take medications as prescribed, follow up with your primary care physician or specialist and make arrangements to pay your bill.

Admission will be determined by an inpatient physician based on a number of factors, including your medical needs and the availability of hospital beds. You will be placed on the floor that is most closely related to your course of treatment.

What to Bring to the ER


  • Physician information
  • Photo ID
  • Social Security card
  • Proof of insurance
  • A list of medications
  • Allergy information
  • Family and personal medical history


  • Pediatrician information
  • Birth certificate
  • Social Security card
  • Proof of insurance
  • All medications
  • Allergy information
  • Family and personal medical history
  • Personal/comfort items
  • Immunization card


If you arrive to the ER alone, you will need to check-in at the registration desk. If you have preregistered with BayCare through our biometric process, your registration will be expedited because we will already have some of your information in our system. Learn more about our biometric technology.


Triage is a process in which a nurse immediately assesses and prioritizes the needs of each patient based on factors like age, symptoms, and severity of pain. The triage nurse will ask a series of questions to help evaluate your current condition using vitals and severity and location of pain. During triage and throughout the course of treatment, patients will need to rank their pain. However, there are a number of patients that cannot tell you where it hurts, like infants and patients who are intubated. BayCare hospitals use a variety of standardized scales for different age patients.

  • N-PASS, Neonatal Pain, Agitation, and Sedation Scale - The scale measures crying, oxygenation, vital signs, facial expression and sleeplessness to evaluate pain
  • FLACCC scale, the Face, Legs, Activity, Cry, Consolability Scale, is used to assess patients between the ages of 2 months to 7 years and any other patient who is incapable of verbally communicating their pain
  • NVPS, Non-Verbal Pain Scale, used for adults who are unable to communicate their level of pain
  • PAINAD, Pain Assessment in Advanced Dementia - This scale is used for patients who are 65 years or older and are currently diagnosed with advanced dementia
  • Wong-Baker Face Scale - A series of faces ranging from happy to crying face indicates how a patient is feeling

Examination by a Doctor

Your physician will review your electronic medical records and determine if more tests are necessary for your diagnosis. The physician will determine your diagnosis and treatment plan.


Before you see the doctor you may need to go through some testing. Not every condition warrants testing. Testing can include labs and imaging. Depending on your condition, the ER staff will direct you to a fast track area where tests will be completed, or a nurse will perform the tests in the exam room and transport will take you to the imaging department and back to your ER bed. Some tests require preparation and some results must be reviewed by a radiologist or other specialists. The emergency staff will provide patients and their families with regular progress reports throughout your stay.

Wait Time

Emergencies are not planned, nor do hospitals provide treatment on a first come, first serve basis. Patients are seen based on medical complaint, not by arrival time. Wait time is hard to determine, but the goal is to get you taken care of as quickly as possible. You can find out the average wait time at BayCare emergency rooms here. Emergency rooms are generally very busy places. Patients are not typically seen in the order they arrive based on a number of factors. The wait in an emergency room can depend on the severity of others (high/urgent severity, high severity with threatened functionality, moderate severity), the amount of required testing, time of day and the number of beds available.