We all hope to never have to visit an emergency room, but if you ever do find that you need to visit it is better to come there prepared than not, so that your time there is as productive and pleasant as possible. We hope these tips will also make your visit as safe as possible and help save you money, too.

Prepare in advance a folder with all your medical information such as past doctor visits, tests you have taken, er signmedicine you use, allergies you may have, any vitamins or other nutritional supplements you may be taking, and all other relevant information that could help a doctor know about you and your state of health without having to discuss it with you. You may be in pain or be nervous, and you might forget to tell the doctor something, or not want to talk at all.

Find out from your health insurance company which hospitals your insurance will pay for and keep this list in a handy place so you don’t have to search for it when the emergency arises.

When you go to the ER be sure to bring with you the folder you prepared in advance, and come expecting to have to wait. Many emergency rooms are extremely busy places. The ER at New York Presbyterian Hospital where Josyann Abisaab is on staff is one of the country’s busiest and best. Although you can expect excellent care in such a place, you may have to wait for it. Therefore it is a good idea to come prepared for such an eventuality with comfort items like  water, hand sanitizer, coins for vending machines and pay phones (if you don’t have a cell phone), tissues, snacks, something to read.