What to Expect at the ER | Whittier, CA | PIH Health

What to Expect at the ER

Learn about what to expect when you or a loved one visits an emergency room for care at PIH Health.

When You Arrive

A registered nurse will start your visit by learning more about you and the reason for your visit. This is called triage. Expect your triage nurse to:

  • Ask about your symptoms
  • Review your medical history
  • Briefly examine you

When Will I See a Doctor?

Patients with the most urgent and life threatening conditions receive treatment first. That means someone who arrived at the emergency room after you may get treated before you. If your condition changes while you are waiting, talk to the triage nurse.

Be assured that we know you need medical care. We promise to listen to your concerns and provide treatment as quickly as we can.


A team member will talk with you to get the information we need to begin your patient record, order diagnostic tests, and treat you. Make the registration process go as smoothly as possible by bringing:

  • Health insurance information
  • Information about any recent medical procedures or test results
  • List of current medications (or the medications in their original packages)
  • List of known allergies
  • Personal identification

Getting Care

When it’s your turn for care, a provider who specializes in emergency medicine will evaluate you. Your provider may order imaging tests or other diagnostic tests to learn more about your condition. Count on us to do our best to keep you informed about the process.

When your diagnostic tests results are available, your provider will tell you the best next steps for you. Depending on your condition you may:

  • Receive treatment and return home
  • Be admitted to the hospital

Ask your care team questions at any time.

Follow-Up Care

Before you go home, you’ll receive written instructions about how to care for yourself after you leave the ER. It’s very important that you understand and follow these instructions, including taking all medications as prescribed.

Take care of your health by following up with your primary care provider or the doctor we refer you to.

If your condition worsens and your primary care provider is not immediately available, please feel free to return to the ER. We are here to help you.