Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Patient hangar rail

A more realistic option
 
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Some healthcare systems struggle to cope with the influx of patients into accident and emergency units at times of high demand.

A "lack of beds" is often blamed.

Now, a bed ( or a trolley) occupies a much larger footprint than a chair, or someone standing.

A system of sliding drawers akin to the refrigerated systems used in mortuaries would be an efficient way of stacking patients but might be perceived as unduly pessimistic (depending on the reputation of the hospital).

Noting that many receiving areas make use of curtains suspended from ceiling tracks, a system similar to that employed by meat processing facilities would offer improved storage density.

At triage, patients would be routed depending in whether they are (a) wealthy, (b) have something interesting wrong with them, (c) are going to get increasingly messy if something isn't done right now, (d) not in categories a, b, or c, or (e) dead*.

Category C patients would be asked to put on a parachute-type harness, then hung from rollers running on rails fixed at ceiling level. A system of points and sidings would allow patients to be moved to a new location with ease and mnimal effort.

*Or not in category (a) and near enough to death to not be worth bothering with.

8th of 7, Feb 12 2017

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       One of the basic problems with healthcare, in terms of efficiency, is in trying to deal with the whole person. So, for instance, you'll have a cardiologist trying to get an ECG; while he's doing that, the neurologist can't do an EEG and the proctologist can't proctologise (at least not without disrupting the ECG).   

       So you have lots of specialists all falling over themselves because all the parts of the patient are connected, and hence only one of them can be working at any one time.   

       What's needed, obviously, is to break all the incoming patients down into major subsystems upon arrival, and send these subsystems out to the specialists. So now the cardiologist has a bunch of hearts to look at and, in parallel, the neurologist has a bunch of brains to look at, and the proctologist probably wonders why he didn't go into neurology. Much more efficient.   

       At the end of the process, with all the subassemblies diagnosed and, if necessary, treated or reconditioned, the patient can be reassembled ready for discharge. Note that this system is also inherently transplant-friendly.
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 12 2017
  

       Sheer brilliance, up there with our "Ear piercing by mail" idea. You should post it.
8th of 7, Feb 12 2017
  

       //You should post it.// I already did. I am still awaiting its return, with piercing as advertised.
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 12 2017
  

       Ah.   

       We'll have a look in the back of the "Goods Inwards" refrigerator tomorrow.
8th of 7, Feb 12 2017
  

       Thanks. It was in a white Fedex envelope with an "EVIDENCE DO NOT TAMPER" stamp.
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 12 2017
  

       We've found a Fedex package with your return address on it ... it had been here a while, based on the smell. Some of the contents have, er, degraded somewhat, but there's a manilla envelope with half a dozen spent cartridge cases - rifle calibre. It says "Grassy Knoll, November 22, 1963" in faded writing ... is it important ?
8th of 7, Feb 26 2017
  

       //Some of the contents have, er, degraded somewhat// Not to worry. To be honest, it wasn't my ear anyway.   

       // a manilla envelope with half a dozen spent cartridge cases - rifle calibre// Yes, that rings a bell. My "remote ear piercing" business would have been much better than your postal service, if I'd only I'd had time to work out a few teething problems.
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 26 2017
  
      
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