Hospitals in San Francisco
August 2, 2012 4:47 PM   Subscribe

What Hospital(s) would a tourist who had an accident in San Francisco likely be sent to?

My Father-in-law is on holidays with his wife in San Francisco. We got a text message this morning to say that his wife had fallen while cycling across the Golden Gate and had badly broken her arm and was awaiting surgery. He also said his phone was 'banjaxed', meaning that he's run out of battery life. He's not likely to go hunting for a charger, let alone buy a new phone, so everything has kind of gone dark.

We don't know too much more. No idea where they were staying, where she's being treated or how serious it is (though from what we do know it sounds bad).

I've googled but would like to be able to narrow it down before trying to get in contact.
posted by Elmore to Travel & Transportation around San Francisco, CA (28 answers total)
I have no SF-specific hospital knowledge, but it might work to call an ambulance company in the area and ask them. This looks like one possibility.
posted by primethyme at 4:53 PM on August 2, 2012

Thanks for that, good idea. That wouldn't have occured to me.
posted by Elmore at 4:57 PM on August 2, 2012

Was there an ambulance involved? if so, I would try geography - the nearest couple of ER's to Golden Gate Park. Here or Here maybe. Otherwise, do you know their insurance? You could search for preffered providers and try again by closeness to golden gate park.
posted by McSwaggers at 4:57 PM on August 2, 2012

The Golden Gate Bridge is not Golden Gate Park. Where did this happen?
posted by madcaptenor at 4:59 PM on August 2, 2012

SF General or CPMC are the big ones. Kaiser and possibly UCSF are other options.
posted by rhizome at 5:03 PM on August 2, 2012 [4 favorites]

I think SF General is the most likely (it's the biggest), followed by CPMC or St. Francis. This page lists all the ERs (which is where I assume she would have gone?) in San Francisco with their phone numbers, and there aren't that many.
posted by grapesaresour at 5:04 PM on August 2, 2012 [1 favorite]

You might try to call the general information line for the bridge itself (though it's after 5pm now here so they might not answer): 415-921-5858

Some of the answer may be related to where on the bridge they were, presumably could have been taken to hospital in either SF or north somewhere.
posted by marylynn at 5:04 PM on August 2, 2012

SF General is pretty far from the bridge, but it's the biggest, and city-run, and most likely if they're not insured or do not have US-based insurance. It's probably easiest to just start calling around. Best wishes for her quick recovery.
posted by judith at 5:06 PM on August 2, 2012

Don't know if there was an ambulance involved - we assume that there was.

As far as I know this happened on the Golden Gate Bridge, not Golden Gate Park.

Looks like CPMC and SF General are the palces to start. I appreciate your help.
posted by Elmore at 5:08 PM on August 2, 2012

That makes sense Judith - they'll be insured, but not US-based insured. Thanks.
posted by Elmore at 5:09 PM on August 2, 2012

stupid question, but is there any reason he won't call you on a hospital or payphone to give you an update? Is sitting tight the best strategy, albeit a hard one?
posted by thermonuclear.jive.turkey at 5:10 PM on August 2, 2012

St. Mary's is also a possible option. She wouldn't end up at Kaiser unless she had Kaiser insurance. The largest hospitals closest to the GG Bridge are UCSF, CPMC, St. Francis, and St. Mary's.

SF General is unlikely unless it was a really traumatic accident -- that's the Level 1 Trauma Center for the area, but smaller injuries are less likely to end up there, especially since it's across town.
posted by gingerbeer at 5:10 PM on August 2, 2012 [1 favorite]

There are 4 CMPC campuses, FWIW.
posted by mollymayhem at 5:11 PM on August 2, 2012

It's possible they would have been taken north (into Marin County) instead of south (into the city); in that case you might want Marin General Hospital (415) 925-7200. (Can someone who knows Marin better than me -- that is, at all -- weigh in on this? I'm going by what Google tells me.)
posted by madcaptenor at 5:12 PM on August 2, 2012

Also, if you find out they're at UCSF, I live nearby and can attempt to deliver a message.
posted by mollymayhem at 5:13 PM on August 2, 2012 [3 favorites]

Marin is highly unlikely. The hospital is quite a long way away from the bridge, as opposed to several ERs near the bridge on the SF side.

Use the list from grapesaresour's link, and call UCSF, St. Mary's, CPMC, and St. Francis.
posted by gingerbeer at 5:15 PM on August 2, 2012

stupid question, but is there any reason he won't call you on a hospital or payphone to give you an update? Is sitting tight the best strategy, albeit a hard one?

Not a stupid question. That was the first thing I said to my wife this morning and I just got the eyeroll. It's not what he would do.
posted by Elmore at 5:15 PM on August 2, 2012

And we're very close to SF General, should they end up there.
posted by gingerbeer at 5:16 PM on August 2, 2012 [1 favorite]

Thanks for everyone's help. We'll start with SF General and CPMC. I really appreciate the offers to help, it's great. I'll update when we hear more. Thanks to everyone.
posted by Elmore at 5:21 PM on August 2, 2012

Blazing Saddles was 80% likely to be the bike rental company, and GGBHTD staff almost certainly know about the incident of calls to hospitals don't yield results.
posted by quarterframer at 5:22 PM on August 2, 2012 [8 favorites]

...IF calls...
posted by quarterframer at 5:23 PM on August 2, 2012

SF General is the most likely. I believe it's a trauma center. HIPPA may prevent them from releasing info unless they've been authorized.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 5:45 PM on August 2, 2012 [1 favorite]

There aren't that many hospitals in the city at all, so yeah, just keep calling around and you should have an answer soon enough. My understanding is that most hospitals will release basic directory information over the phone (e.g. "John Smith was treated and released" or "Mary Smith was admitted. I can see if she is able to accept a phone call.") They will generally do this unless the patient has specifically requested otherwise. For privacy reasons, medical personnel aren't generally going to discuss details of her medical condition without some authorization, especially when she already has a spouse there with her.

So you might not get specific information from your call, but you'll probably get an affirmative "yes, she's here and this is how you can reach her/her husband" unless they have taken direct steps to cut off all contact. Add me to the list of people nearby willing to help put a cell phone charger in the man's hand if need be. Good luck!
posted by zachlipton at 6:20 PM on August 2, 2012

311 might also be helpful. From outside of SF, you can reach them at 415-701-2311. They answer 24/7.
posted by gubenuj at 9:18 PM on August 2, 2012

SF General is probably the first place to try.
posted by The Light Fantastic at 11:15 PM on August 2, 2012

Thanks for your help. He's made contact and we're not in the dark anymore.
posted by Elmore at 12:33 AM on August 3, 2012 [3 favorites]

Glad to hear that. Where did they end up?
posted by gingerbeer at 10:15 AM on August 3, 2012

Funny thing is I don't know for certain, but now that there is a line of communication it doesn't matter so much as we don't need to find them. I wasn't talking to him, but I believe it is SF General. Information has been a little fractured, and there has been a bit of piecing things together from three or four different conversations. That's standard operating procedures though, just made things a bit confusing in this case especially with the time difference and distance. All is as well as could be hoped. Unfortunately I think they are going to cut their holiday short, which I know for him is disappointing as they were heading to New Orleans which was a place he really wanted to visit. Again, thanks to everyone, I really appreciate the fast and helpful replies.
posted by Elmore at 1:27 PM on August 3, 2012

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