Hospital codes are imperative to the way the health care system is run. These special code names allow hospital workers to react quickly and calmly to emergencies.
The most common codes are code blue, code black, and code red. You may have heard these words blaring from the waiting room intercom and wondered what exactly they meant.
If you weren’t trained to work in the health care setting, it’s almost impossible to even guess their meanings since the jargon used in the medical field is like a language from another dimension.
But one internal medicine and rheumatology specialist on TikTok, Siobhan (@theviolinmd), is explaining to the average person what hospital codes actually mean. The more we know!
First is code blue. This is one you may recognize. Code blue means that there is a medical emergency when a person’s life is in danger.
“This is when I jump to action. It’s a very high-stakes time. We’re trying to bring someone back to life often,” Siobhan elaborated.
Second, code orange signifies an external disaster, usually due to a hazardous spill incident, such as toxic chemicals or a patient’s blood. Hospital employees must then work urgently to decontaminate the area.
The third is code black. Code black typically means that there is a bomb threat. Specific information about where the danger is located and the description of the persons making the threats are included when the code is called.
Next on the list is code silver, indicating an active shooter in the vicinity or someone with a gun. And now, we’ve reached a code that is not named after a color: code omega. This code is activated when a patient is experiencing so much blood loss that it’s life-threatening.
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