Emergency Services

McAlester Regional Health Center hopes that you or your family never require Emergency Services, but we understand that sometimes, life happens, and you deserve Emergency Room care that you can depend on. We are one of two Trauma Centers located in Southeast Oklahoma, and you can rest assured that you’ll receive quality emergency care close to home. 

As a Level III Trauma Center, McAlester Regional Health Center is equipped with on-call specialty physicians who can provide general surgery, orthopedics, anesthesia, and obstetrics services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Upon arrival, an Emergency Room physician immediately evaluates trauma patients to determine what services are needed and consults with the appropriate specialist. From there, the specialist will come see the patient within twenty minutes of the call.

Our dedicated service has not gone unnoticed. McAlester Regional Health Center’s Emergency Department received the Sustained Service award for clinical excellence from the VHA Oklahoma/Arkansas Regional Office. Based on a year’s worth of operational data, this award recognized the ER for maintaining a level of performance equal to or greater than the CDC benchmarks for the number or percentage of patients who left the ER without being seen, or improved overall length of stay in the ER. McAlester Regional Health Center is dedicated to continuing to provide excellent Emergency Services that the Southeast Oklahoma community can trust. 

Emergency Department

Our ER is staffed with trained professionals to deliver quality care to you.

  • Physicians – The ER is staffed with a medical physician, either an MD or DO. There is at least one physician on duty at all times.
  • Nursing Staff – MRHC employs a staff of Registered Nurses to assist with the examination and treatment of patients.
  • Physician Extenders – MRHC employs several Physician Assistants and Nurse Practitioners for the ER setting to assist with examining and treating patients. The use of physician extenders have been very successful in reducing backlogs in the ER and decreasing wait time by evaluating and treating lower acuity patients.
  • Nurse Practitioner – A Nurse Practitioner is a Registered Nurse with advanced, specialized training and who is licensed through the Board of Nursing.
  • Physician Assistant (PA) – A Physician Assistant is a healthcare professional who has received advanced training and licensure from the Oklahoma Board of Medical Licensure and Supervision.

What to Expect

Patients or a close family member must register with an admissions clerk located inside the ER entrance. Patients will be triaged to assess the level of their injuries. Once registered, patients are moved into examination rooms dependent upon each patient's urgency status and the emergency department activity.


Triage is a medical term that means "assigning of priority" of patients that have entered the ER. Critical patients are seen before a patient with a non-critical condition, regardless of what time you arrive at the ER.

Wait Times

Wait times vary from day to day or even hour to hour. If your condition is critical and/or life threatening, you will be seen immediately. If your condition is not life threatening, you will be asked to wait. Our average wait time is less than two hours but can be longer during peak periods.

What to Bring to the ER


  • A list of your medications, allergies and surgeries. If you do not have a medication list ready, please bring the bottles with you.
  • Your Primary Care Physician's name and number.
  • A notepad and pen to jot down specific questions and concerns.
  • Change for vending machines, but check with your nurse or physician before eating or drinking.


  • A favorite toy or book that helps soothe your child.
  • Your pediatrician's name and number.
  • Depending on your child's age, bring diapers and wipes, formula, juice and a bottle. However, do not feed your child until you have permission from the nurse or doctor. If there is any suspicion that your child may need surgery, he should not eat or drink anything.
  • A list of your child's medications, allergies and surgeries. If you do not have a medication list ready, please bring the bottles with you. 
  • Keep your child's immunization card handy, especially if you are not sure that all the vaccinations are up-to-date.
  • Notepad and pen may be useful to jot down specific questions and concerns.

Do Not Bring to the ER

Jewelry, valuables or keepsakes. It is very hard to keep track of such items in emergency situations, and many times valuables are lost. Please give all valuables to family for safe keeping if possible.


Federal privacy laws (HIPAA) require us to obtain your permission before we can release specific information about you to friends or family members who call to inquire about you.  You will be asked to complete special paperwork during your admissions process to assist us in this effort.

Emergency Medical Treatment & Labor Act

The Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act is a federal law in which all hospitals with a designated Emergency Room must comply.  MRHC operates a designated Emergency Room with 24-hour coverage 365 days per year.

This law requires MRHC:

  • To provide a medical screening examination to all patients who come to the hospital seeking care to determine whether they have any potentially harmful emergency medical conditions.
  • To have on-call physician specialists, within the staff of the hospital, who will respond to the hospital and assist in the evaluation, ongoing treatment, and stabilization of the patient.
  • Hospitals are not required to have every specialty physician on call.

In regards to transfers to another facility, the law states that:

  • Patients may not be transferred in a critical condition unless their needs cannot be met at MRHC.
  • Patients may not be transferred in a critical condition unless the ER physician certifies in writing that the transfer is needed.
  • Patients may not be transferred until a receiving hospital has agreed to accept the patient and they have adequate space and skills necessary to care for the patient.
  • Patients who are transferred must be provided appropriate medical transport.

Upon Discharge

When you leave the Emergency Department, you will be given a copy of discharge instructions that include medication and home care instructions.  You may be told to follow up with a primary care physician or specialist.  It is important that you understand all discharge instructions.  If you have questions, please ask a nurse before you leave the ER.

If you had tests done and are waiting for results, you will be instructed on how to obtain the test results.  It is important that you give us the correct phone number so a nurse can contact you, if needed.

Parental Consent to Treat Minors

Kids will be kids, so it's good to be prepared at all times, especially when you are not there. That's when you need this form. It's a pre-consent form authorizing emergency medical treatment for minor children whose parents are not immediately available. Click here to view a brochure on Kids Will Be Kids, which contains an Authorization for Emergency Care to Minor(s).

Please complete the form and give it to persons of legal age who are entrusted with the care of your minor child or children. If there is a non-life threatening emergency, immediate medical or dental treatment is available while you are being located and advised. The form is valid throughout Oklahoma and can be given to family members and friends elsewhere in the state.

Primary Stroke Center

MRHC is a nationally accredited Primary Stroke Center. These are the departments that immediately dispatch trained professionals for each Code Stroke called in our hospital.

  • Emergency Department
  • Respiratory Therapy
  • Critical Care
  • Pharmacy
  • Informatics Technology
  • Radiology
  • EMS
  • Laboratory
  • Admitting
  • Stroke Coordinator
  • House Supervisor

MRHC called Code Stroke for 264 patients in 2016.