Request your complimentary copy of our eBook, You Know You Need an Advocate When...

Never go to the Emergency Room alone – particularly in July

Never go to the Emergency Room alone – particularly in July

Never go to the Emergency Room alone – particularly in July

As the summer heat intensifies and holiday celebrations are in full swing, July becomes one of the busiest months for emergency room visits in the United States. The spike is primarily due to fireworks-related injuries, heat-related illnesses, increased outdoor activities, and holiday travel. At Patient Advocates of Southwest FL, LLC, (PAoSWFL) I am dedicated to transforming healthcare journeys by empowering patients with expert advocacy and navigation services. This blog delves into the importance of having a trusted and reliable companion or partner by your side in every high-stress medical environment.

Why July Sees Increased ER Visits

According to the Pew Research Center and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, the Fourth of July alone sees a dramatic increase in injury-related ER visits, with nearly 91,000 people seeking emergency care around this holiday. Factors contributing to the surge include:

· Fireworks Injuries: Fireworks cause thousands of injuries each year, particularly around Independence Day.

· Heat-Related Illnesses: High temperatures can lead to dehydration, heat exhaustion, and heatstroke.

· Outdoor Activities: Increased participation in sports and recreational activities often results in accidents and injuries.

· Holiday Travel: More people traveling increases the likelihood of accidents and health emergencies.

The Role of a Reliable Partner or Trusted Companion

Navigating the chaos of an emergency room can and is often overwhelming. Particularly during peak times like July. A partner or companion (family member, friend, caregiver, healthcare advocate, or legal guardian) can make a significant difference. Here’s how:

Effective Communication:

A partner or companion can help communicate your symptoms, medical history, and concerns to healthcare providers, confirming accurate and effective communication. They can also ask critical questions about your diagnosis, treatment options, and follow-up care, making certain that you understand everything about your medical situation.

Patient Advocate Tip: How well do you really remember what has been said and what to do in extremely stressful situations?

You might be shocked to learn that 40-80% of medical information a healthcare practitioner provides is immediately forgotten.[i] (My experience in significantly stressful health-related situations, which includes the ER, actually bears out the percentage of information remembered is closer to or exceeds 80%.) If you are unable to remember, what is the likelihood of good adherence to recommended treatment?

Medical advice, in any healthcare situation, is verbally shared following an exam. While written information is better remembered, in the ER, recommendations come in the form of discharge instructions. Know that any questions you asked the physician or other provider during your brief time spent with him or her are not included as part of those instructions.

Patient Advocate Tip: Anything you don’t understand, ask and keep asking questions until you are satisfied that you understand the answer.

Other Benefits of Having a Partner or Companion (Partner) with You in the ER

Emotional Support:

The presence of a familiar face can significantly reduce anxiety and stress, providing comfort and reassurance during an overwhelming experience. Emotional support is crucial, especially in high-stress environments like the emergency room or ICU.

Informed Decision-Making:

In emergency situations, quick decisions are often required. Your partner can help you weigh options, make informed choices, and provide consent for treatments if you are unable to do so. That individual ensures that you fully understand your options and the implications of each decision.

Monitoring and Advocacy:

A partner can monitor the care you receive, making sure procedures are followed correctly and advocating for you if something seems amiss. Understand that your trusted companion plays a critical role in preventing medical errors and ensuring that your treatment plan is adhered to.

Logistical Support:

Managing personal belongings, handling administrative tasks, and arranging follow-up care are all easier with a partner. They also make sure of a smooth transition from emergency care to home or further treatment.

The summer months, particularly July, are a time of increased emergency room visits. At PAoSWFL, my mission is to empower patients through advocacy and expert navigation services, transforming healthcare journeys for the better.

To reinforce, based on personal and professional experience, the absolute necessity of having an advocate (family member, care partner, or another trusted companion) who will watch over you during a visit to one of the most stressful healthcare situations you will ever encounter, occur in the Emergency Room. For the remainder of this week, beginning tomorrow (July 3), I will also post (LinkedIn and Facebook) suggestions of a partner’s various roles in stressful situations to affirm you receive the best possible care during an emergency.

Be sure to reach out with any questions by responding to posted questions (LinkedIn or Facebook – Patient Advocates of Southwest FL - or contact me at


Pew Research Center, "July 4 Brings a Boom in Injury-Related Hospital Visits"​(Pew Research Center).​

[i]Kessels, Roy P C, Patients’ Memory for medical information. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, 2003, May: 96(5): 219-222.

Send a Message

We'd love to hear from you! Feel free to get in touch with any questions, comments, or inquiries you may have.

Contact Us

Give us a call

(941) 267-7109

Send us an email

[email protected]
Follow Us