Our providers are trained in emergency medicine and treat over 83,000 patients a year regardless of race, ethnic origin, religion or financial status.
Physicians and nurses who are specially trained in emergency medicine provide care 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Other specialists may be called in for consultation, special procedures and/or surgery. The Emergency Department (ED) provides for patients' emergent needs, and all patients presenting to the ED are examined by a trained provider. Patients are encouraged to have an established relationship with a primary care physician for routine medical care.
Understanding the emergency department
Since the provision of quality care is important to us, the following information may help patients and their families better understand how the ED functions.
Prior to registering, patients will be seen by a nurse who will ask questions about the patient’s medical condition. That nurse will prioritize the patients in the order of urgency. Some patients will be immediately taken to the treatment area while others may wait longer based on the assessment of the triage nurse.
During the registration process, the patient or their guardian or advocate will be asked for identifying information; health insurance information; and the name of the patient’s healthcare provider, if applicable.
All adults must sign for medical care and treatment. Parental consent or consent from a legal guardian is necessary for all children under the age of 18. In a life-threatening situation, emergent care will be given while efforts are made to contact the parent or guardian.
The ED is not responsible for lost items. Patients and/or their guardians or advocates are asked to take all items with them that may have been brought into the patient care room.
Using the ED
Any time you feel emergency care is necessary to save a life or prevent a permanent disability, call 911.
If you think you are having a heart attack or stroke, DO NOT DRIVE! Call 911 for transport and immediate medical attention.
Thinking about going to the ED because it's convenient or because it's necessary?
- Emergency rooms do not take patients on a first come, first served basis. They will treat the sickest individuals first, so you may have to wait longer than expected.
- Non-emergency care in the ED can cost as much as three times more than the same care available at your doctor's office, and often the ED visits take longer because the providers are not familiar with your health history.
- Emergency doctors focus primarily on treating the symptoms causing concern. Your regular doctor knows your health history and can help you find solutions that improve your overall health.
- Most local clinics offer same-day appointments and appointments after regular business hours. If your clinic is closed, they may have a doctor or nurse that can be reached by phone to help you determine if your condition needs emergency care.
- Check your insurance carrier to see if they have a nurse hotline or whether they require prior authorization for emergency room use.
Whether going to the ED or clinic, be sure to bring a list of the current medications, vitamins and supplements you are taking.
Yakima Valley Memorial's pharmacy operates 7 a.m - 7 p.m. every day to provide take-home prescriptions for ED patients. Payment for take-home prescriptions is required at time of service.