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leahutinet
07-23-2017, 10:49 PM
Quick question: is there a minimum amount of time that someone needs to spend in a hospital after a kidnapping? I have some characters that will be rescued by their families after several weeks of being held captive in a basement, they're found unconscious because of a gas but most of them won't be injured. But how long do they have to stay in a hospital until they're free to go if they aren't physically hurt?

Also, if you know roughly how long they'd have to stay because of these injuries, feel free to share your knowledge:
One of them became very underweight when she was missing. She'd already been anorexic before, and she was pretty skinny before she was kidnapped. She lost a lot of weight because the kidnapper wanted her to become anorexic again, knowing that she'd already been before.
One of them fell and knocked her head on something when she fell unconscious because of the gas and some blood dropped from her head, but I don't want it to be a very bad injury.
One of them has a broken leg that has been untreated for about as long as she's been missing (maybe a month or a month and a half)
One of them is about 8 months pregnant with the baby of the kidnapper. She doesn't want to keep the baby, for obvious reasons. What are her choices?

Aside from that, the others are doing alright physically. Probably not psychologically, but that's another issue. So, how long does it take for doctors to run some tests on my characters before releasing them from the hospital if nothing's wrong besides maybe not having eaten a lot of food while they were gone?

MaeZe
07-24-2017, 12:28 AM
If they were unconscious, there's a good chance they'll be kept overnight. But if there is nothing wrong and the reason for the loss of consciousness is explained and no longer an issue, they may not even stay overnight.

Other problems like the weight loss would be managed with outpatient follow-up.

cornflake
07-24-2017, 04:10 AM
Quick question: is there a minimum amount of time that someone needs to spend in a hospital after a kidnapping? I have some characters that will be rescued by their families after several weeks of being held captive in a basement, they're found unconscious because of a gas but most of them won't be injured. But how long do they have to stay in a hospital until they're free to go if they aren't physically hurt? You know you can't force someone to stay in hospital if they're cognizant, right? Doctors can want to keep you all they want, but that's too bad if you want to leave. That said, not injured generally isn't going to put anyone in the hospital. Someone might be checked over -- IF they agree to go in the first place (you can't force someone to go either, unless you arrest them saying they're mentally not able to make a decision for themselves,
and pose a danger to themselves or others, in which case, that has to be immediately backed up by two psychological professionals and will likely end up in court fairly immediately.) -- but why is someone not injured in the hospital?

Also, if you know roughly how long they'd have to stay because of these injuries, feel free to share your knowledge:
One of them became very underweight when she was missing. She'd already been anorexic before, and she was pretty skinny before she was kidnapped. She lost a lot of weight because the kidnapper wanted her to become anorexic again, knowing that she'd already been before. Depends on whether she a. wants to be in the hospital, b. is in some kind of medical crisis. If not, no time.


One of them fell and knocked her head on something when she fell unconscious because of the gas and some blood dropped from her head, but I don't want it to be a very bad injury. Maybe overnight for observation?

One of them has a broken leg that has been untreated for about as long as she's been missing (maybe a month or a month and a half) Might need surgery, which would be a couple/few days.

One of them is about 8 months pregnant with the baby of the kidnapper. She doesn't want to keep the baby, for obvious reasons. What are her choices? To give the baby up for adoption. Being pregnant is not a reason for hospitalization. She can go find an adoption counselor, or wait until the kid is born and tell someone she doesn't want it, or just leave it at the hospital, if she has it there, or bring it to a dropoff location and walk away,
if she doesn't want to deal with any paperwork.

Aside from that, the others are doing alright physically. Probably not psychologically, but that's another issue. So, how long does it take for doctors to run some tests on my characters before releasing them from the hospital if nothing's wrong besides maybe not having eaten a lot of food while they were gone?

A few hours? Again, if they choose to go.

Jan74
07-24-2017, 05:38 AM
Quick question: is there a minimum amount of time that someone needs to spend in a hospital after a kidnapping? I have some characters that will be rescued by their families after several weeks of being held captive in a basement, they're found unconscious because of a gas but most of them won't be injured. But how long do they have to stay in a hospital until they're free to go if they aren't physically hurt?It would depend on age of the victims. Where I am after age 14 they have the rights to medical decisions depending on circumstances. I'm a nurse but I don't work ER and I've never dealt with kidnapped patients.

Also, if you know roughly how long they'd have to stay because of these injuries, feel free to share your knowledge:
One of them became very underweight when she was missing. She'd already been anorexic before, and she was pretty skinny before she was kidnapped. She lost a lot of weight because the kidnapper wanted her to become anorexic again, knowing that she'd already been before.
One of them fell and knocked her head on something when she fell unconscious because of the gas and some blood dropped from her head, but I don't want it to be a very bad injury.
One of them has a broken leg that has been untreated for about as long as she's been missing (maybe a month or a month and a half)X-Rays and then if it's healed incorrectly, which can be debilitating, at a future date when there is an open slot in the OR they would reset the leg which would require surgery.
One of them is about 8 months pregnant with the baby of the kidnapper. She doesn't want to keep the baby, for obvious reasons. What are her choices?Adoption

Aside from that, the others are doing alright physically. Probably not psychologically, but that's another issue. So, how long does it take for doctors to run some tests on my characters before releasing them from the hospital if nothing's wrong besides maybe not having eaten a lot of food while they were gone?How long would depend on the efficiency of the ER department when they are brought in. Most likely psychological consults would be given for all of them and blood work would most likely be run on all of them and then the results could take hours/days depending on lab and tests ordered. Aids/HIV/STD testing takes much longer and most they would be seen by a Sexual Assault Nurse who is qualified to perform tests and examinations.

Everything depends on the ages and severity of the gas. If they are minors most likely they would be admitted over night for observations. If they are old enough to refuse to stay then they may be released the same day after b/w and swabs etc.

MaeZe
07-24-2017, 06:06 AM
They don't have to refuse to stay to be discharged after an evaluation if nothing is found and they will be discharged into someone's care.

If this is the US we are talking about here, insurance companies have changed the standard for hospitals keeping or discharging patients. If there is a concern not enough is known about the reason for the unconsciousness, it is likely that overnight observation will be recommended.

But if the drug is known and it is known that once awake problems are unlikely, and there are no other injuries under consideration, and the patients are being discharged to an adequate situation where someone can take care of them, hospitals are just as likely to send the patients home as to admit them.

And if admitted, unless there is a physical problem requiring more care, it is only going to be overnight.

There are lots of scenarios where either staying or going might occur. If the victims were anxious or terribly fearful, an ED doc may very well admit the patient even if there is no apparent physical problem. If the teen is confident they feel fine, it's more likely they'll be sent home.

Refusing to stay is an unlikely occurrence but of course writing is all about conflict and refusing to stay might be part of the story... or not. :)


My apologies for long sentences and missing commas.

Sage
07-24-2017, 05:36 PM
Moved from YA forum

GeorgeK
07-24-2017, 11:33 PM
I agree with the above comments. I'm assuming this is in California as per your other thread. If an adult patient is alert, able to eat, urinate, and has no acute problems then they'd likely get discharged with an arranged follow up with primary care or specialist if appropriate. If a minor, then they would be discharge to their parent or guardian, possibly even an adult sibling. It would depend on the location. I don't specifically know about California. If there is no adult to discharge the patient to then again depending on location it is conceivable they might be admitted at least overnight until arrangements can be made or in a worse case scenario might be remanded to Childrens' services or even police custody. The exception is sadly if the ER does a wallet biopsy and finds that the patient has wonderful insurance then they'd suggest admission. That said, generally anymore people don't have wonderful insurance so that's not likely. Also if they've been held captive for an extended while, presumably they have no identification or proof of insurance