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Sorting Patients Out: The Moral Evaluation Process in Emergency Departments - Marius Wamsiedel

AnthroArt by Antropedia / Namla / Ambigrama

Episode notes
In this reflective paper, I delve into the moral evaluation process carried out by emergency department (ED) triage workers in Romania as they grapple with the rising demand for emergency care. Adopting a symbolic interactionist approach, I scrutinize how triage staff assess patients’ entitlement to and deservingness of care, with a focus on the intricate dynamics of this assessment process. My long-term fieldwork at the EDs of two public hospitals exposed that moral evaluation arises from the pragmatic necessity of dissuading patients from seeking ED services for issues that could be addressed by primary care providers. Since current policies prevent triage workers from denying emergency care access, moral evaluation assumes more subtle forms, such as unwarranted delays, admonishments, and reproaches. Although the moral evaluation process exhibits  ...   ...  Read more
anthropologypatientsemergency department