Website/literature regarding Hospital Triage status codes
VEHM is a 24/7 hospital. Unfortunately, Patients are not always seen in the order of their arrival. Patients needing immediate medical attention or the sickest will be seen first. It is our goal to provide compassionate emergency care to as many pets as we can with minimal delay. Admission rates are at an all time high in the veterinary emergency community. We know your time is valuable and recognize it can be stressful for you and your pet to wait anxiously in the hospital lobby. VEHM has established a hospital code status with an effective triage system to ensure patients receive the best standard of care in a timely manner.
Owners will be expected to answer a few questions regarding the concerns of there pet such as:
- Current symptoms, onset, and duration?
- Known toxin or trauma exposure?
- Current Medical Conditions and History?
- Known toxin or trauma exposure?
- Breathing Habits? Effort, rate, upper airway sounds if not normal for pet, open mouth breathing?
- Mentation / Behavior: responsiveness, gait, energy ect
Additionally pet owners should:
- Make notes to bring with you
- Visit our Pet Education Section for common questions
- Review our code outline in regards to why you are wanting your pet to be seen at this time or give us a call if you have any questions or concerns.
**Triage codes are not only for clients calling but for walk-ins as well**
All types of urgent/emergencies can be seen with minimal wait time.
Examples of cases we will see in WHITE are listed below but not limited to:
- Skin issues (ear infections, allergies, hot spot, “check skin/lump”, small cuts or abrasions, fleas, ticks, mange, ringworm, etc)
- Worms in stool or parasitic infections
- Reverse sneeze
- Rechecks **non-sick**
- Bandage changes
- Suture/drain tube removal
Urgent and emergency only; with expected mild wait times (1-2 hours). WHITE level cases asked to either call back in 2 hours and see if we are out of GREEN status or go to another ER for care.
Examples of cases we will see in GREEN are listed below but not limited to:
- Mild allergic reactions (give benadryl dose)
- Diarrhea without vomiting
- <2 vomiting episodes
- Coughing without trouble breathing or other signs
- Anorexia with no other signs
- Ocular and nasal discharge
Emergencies only with moderate wait times expected (3-4 hours). GREEN & WHITE level cases asked to either call back in 2 hours and see if we are out of YELLOW status or go to another ER for care.
Examples of cases we will see in YELLOW are listed below but not limited to:
- Complications from pre-existing conditions (diabetes, kidney failure, congestive heart failure, etc.)
- Minor lacerations and abrasions
- Toxin exposure
- Ocular injury
- Prolonged vomiting/diarrhea with or without blood
- Ingested foreign object
Life threatening/critical emergencies only with significant wait time expected (>4 hours). WHITE & GREEN level cases asked to either call back in 4 hours to see if we are out of RED status or go to another ER for care. YELLOW level cases asked to either call back in 2 hours to see if we are out of RED status or go to another ER for care.
Examples of cases we will see in RED are listed below but not limited to:
- Respiratory distress
- Heat stroke
- Unable to urinate
- Snake bite
Complete shutdown to any incoming patients. Clients asked to go to other ERs!
* all status changes (besides black) need to be made by and agreed upon by the doctor and lead manager on duty. If there is a disagreement between the two then they should contact the medical director.