Lynchburg General Hospital's Emergency Department is open 24 hours to serve people who are seriously injured or ill and require immediate care. A triage process is used to prioritize emergency care and identify patients requiring medical attention according to the nature and severity of their injury or illness.
As a visitor, we realize you are anxious about your ill family member or friend. Since we have so many patients and visitors, we have developed the following guidelines for our visitors to ensure the best care for our patients:
- Please notify the volunteer at the front desk that you are a visitor.
- Tell the volunteer the name of the patient you have accompanied to the ER.
- The volunteer will assist you in getting an update on your family member or friend's condition. If the volunteer is not in the waiting room, check with the triage nurse for information. The charge nurse in the ER is responsible for notifying the volunteer or triage nurse when a patient is permitted to have a visitor.
- Our physicians prefer to examine the patient before we allow visitors in the treatment area. The exceptions are the elderly, who may have one visitor present at all times, and children, who may have both parents present at all times.
- If the patient has an emergency situation, the attending physician may request all family members or friends see the patient one at a time.
- A security officer is available near the triage area. If you are unable to obtain the information you need, please check with the officer. The security officer is responsible for operating the electronic door leading to the ER. Please allow the officer time to operate the door.
- We remind you that no smoking is allowed anywhere on the campus of Lynchburg General Hospital, or any Centra facility.
- We understand how difficult it is to wait for information. We want to make your waiting time as hassle-free as possible, and we welcome suggestions to improve our current visitor guidelines.
- Please note that when you call in to ask about a patient, we cannot give you a lot of information. Our hospital policy states that staff are only allowed to give a patient's status over the telephone. Further information should be obtained from an immediate family member or the patient's physician.
Practicing safety measures may not be foremost on your mind when you go outdoors, but taking precautions can mean the difference from an enjoyable adventure and a trip to the emergency department.
[Don Janes, M.D., Ph.D]
Wilderness Safety Tips:
- Travel with a companion. You don't want to be by yourself in case of an emergency. Leave a copy of your itinerary with a responsible person.
- Be in good physical condition. Set a comfortable pace as you hike.
- Think about your footing while traveling near cliffs. Trees and bushes can't always be trusted to hold you. Stay on developed trails or dry, solid rock areas with good footing.
- Wear appropriate clothing for the trail conditions and season.
- Check your equipment and keep it in good working order.
- Be weather wise. Keep an eye on current and predicted weather conditions.
- Learn basic first aid so you will know how to identify and treat injuries and illnesses. Carry a first aid kit with you. It is also wise to carry a map, flashlight, compass, pocket knife and lighter.
- Pack your water in, or purify through chemical treatment. No matter how clean or pure stream water looks, it's likely to contain water-borne parasites and microorganisms that can cause discomfort and sometimes serious illness.
Learn how to identify the symptoms of heat exhaustion, heat stroke and dehydration, and know how to treat them. Heat stroke is the most serious form of heat exhaustion and is a medical emergency. If you suspect that someone has heat stroke you should call 911 immediately and render first aid until paramedics arrive. Move the person to an air-conditioned environment -- or at least a cool, shady area -- and remove any unnecessary clothing. Fan air over the person while wetting the skin with water. Apply ice packs to the armpits, groin, neck and back.
Heart Stroke Symptoms:
- Core body temperature greater than 105 degrees Fahrenheit
- Throbbing headache
- Dizziness and light-headedness
- Lack of sweating despite the heat
- Red, hot, and dry skin
- Muscle weakness or cramps
- Nausea and vomiting
- Rapid heartbeat, which may be either strong or weak
- Rapid, shallow breathing
- Behavioral changes such as confusion, disorientation, or staggering
Identifying Poisonous Snakes and Spiders:
The most common venomous snake in Virginia is the Copperhead, patterned snake with dark, chestnut colored hourglass shaped bands across the back and sides. A copperhead’s venom is relatively weak, and bites result in pain, swelling and bruising, but anti-venom and a trip to the emergency room is usually not required. Learn to recognize their pattern!
Can you see the copperhead?