At Company Nurse, we honor the big job our nurses face every day. When you hear the word “nurse,” you likely imagine a nurse bedside at a hospital. Our nurses, while many have experience with hospital and clinical bedside nursing, play a very different role at Company Nurse – one that requires great listening skills and strong intuition. Company Nurse’s RNs offer 24/7 pre-claim telephonic nurse triage. Their active listening and therapeutic communication at the onset of an injury have literally saved lives.
Clinical Director and Hotline Supervisor Dorothy Antic shared stories with me recently of these critical situations. One in particular that stuck out was when an 83-year-old gentleman slipped and fell in a school cafeteria and hit his head. While he said he felt fine, our nurse asked all of the right questions to ultimately realize that his condition could quickly worsen given the medication he was taking. Giving him explicit details to go to the ER if he felt off in any way, our nurse took the extra step in notifying his wife too. The medical triage phone call did not end there. Rather, our nurse picked up the phone the next morning to make sure he was doing well. This story had a happy ending, because he was doing just fine.
Another story she shared was of a 52-year-old gentleman that also had a fall. After 25 minutes on the call with our nurse, he said he felt better taken care of by her over the phone than by his own Primary Care Physician. Now, that is a complement. In the end, our nurse may have prevented him from experiencing a ruptured disc.
Listening, asking the right questions, and picking up on even the slightest cues are traits all of our nurses possess – which is why they are exceptional in their profession. Take, for example, another injury call we received from a 30-year-old gentleman in Utah. He had already been triaged the day of injury to be seen at an urgent care clinic. After treatment by the clinic, two days later his wound was not healing – in fact the original puncture areas increased three inches up his arm. The clinic said to continue to wait and see how it progresses. So, the gentleman called our nurse that originally triaged him. Listening to his description, our nurse instructed him to go to the ER immediately. Our nurse made the right call – it was septicemia. Had he waited, he could have lost a limb.
Going the extra mile should be expected when dealing with an individual’s health. We practice this every day – and not only with injuries. Dorothy shared a heroic effort she personally contributed to in getting a suicidal individual seeking to file a stress claim, immediate emergency response while on the phone that likely saved his life.
We value our nurses and celebrate them today and every day. Nurses are at the heart of health care. #nursesweek
Paul Binsfeld is the founder and president of Company Nurse, LLC, a firm that specializes in medical triage and injury management for workers’ compensation. His career began as a workers’ compensation consultant with mid-size employers helping to streamline claims processes and improve outcomes for injured workers. By working with many different types of employers, he identified a common need for early intervention in the workers’ compensation claims and injury management process, and thus, Company Nurse was born in 1997. Binsfeld – one of the pioneers of the pre-claim nurse triage industry – has over 25 years of experience in workers’ compensation and is one of the most influential leaders in the market.