County General's emergency room is where trauma patients requiring immediate medical attention are first treated. As trauma alone cannot keep a department running, it is also treats non-emergent patients that do not need to go to the hospital's more specialized departments.
Before the 1960s, County did not have an ER. Dr. Oliver Kostin envisioned and designed an entirely new department to turn County into an urban trauma center as revealed in "A Long, Strange Trip".
In recent history, the ER has been subject to various redesigns over the years as seen in "Homecoming", "Insurrection", "Now What?" and "Lights Out". The 2002 redesign involved the placement of metal detectors, demanded by a staff walk-out led by Chief Resident John Carter after an incident involving a patient taking several staffers hostage at gun-point as seen in the Season 9 episode, Insurrection while the 2007 redesign was required due to dated and unsafe architecture and required the department to close for several weeks during the Season 13 episode, "Lights Out".
Despite County General's persisting budget problems, the ER displayed an apt budgetary performance after Kerry Weaver came to power as department head in 1997 during "Friendly Fire", temporarily replacing David Morgenstern who had stepped down after suffering a heart attack in the Season 4 premiere episode, Ambush.
Weaver's tenure was interrupted when in 1998 or 1999, a Doctor named Amanda Lee became Morgenstern's replacement during the Season 5 episode, "Hazed and Confused". Unfortunately, it was later revealed that Lee was actually a fraud and also a psychopath who had impersonated many other jobs in the past as revealed in the Season 5 episode, "Nobody Doesn't Like Amanda Lee".
After that, Robert Romano temporarily headed the ER which happened in the Season 5 episode, "Double Blind". In 1999 and during the Season 6 premiere episode, "Leave it to Weaver", Weaver finally became department head on a permanent basis and during her time there, oversaw many of the ER's redesigns.
Following Robert Romano's appointment to department head in 2003 during the Season 9 episode, "Finders Keepers". His appointment also caused the human records resources to drop sharply due to Romano's abrasive, confrontational and even bigoted demeanor and a full investigation was launched in 2004 as revealed in the Season 10 episode, "Impulse Control" although Romano had died in a hospital crash during the Season 10 episode, Freefall.
After Romano's death, Susan Lewis sought to restore and became the new department although she struggled with it as seen during the Season 11 episode, "Try Carter". After Lewis left the ER for good during the Season 12 episode, "Wake Up", Dr. Luka Kovač who had joined the team at the start of Season 6 became the new department as seen in the Season 12 episode, "All About Christmas Eve" but his administration was marred by the disastrous hiring of Dr. Victor Clemente who later left after being diagnosed with PTSD as seen in the Season 12 episode, >The Gallant Hero and the Tragic Victor.
In 2006, a severe shooting incident occurred as Samantha Taggart's ex returned to kidnap Sam and her young son, Alex which occurred in the Season 12 finale, "Twenty-One Guns".
The resulting shootout left many ER staff members including Abby Lockhart and Luka injured while also resulting in the early, premature birth of Abby and Luka's son.
In 2007, unhappy with hospital politics and after being forced to let Weaver go due to budget as seen in the Season 13 episodes, "Breach of Trust" and "A House Divided", Kovac quit during the Season 13 episode, "Lights Out".
What followed was a very chaotic year for the ER and its staff as they went through many department heads. In the Season 13 finale episode, "Sea Change", Kevin Moretti sought a return to professionalism but he was left damaged by his affair with Abby who was seeking comfort due to Luka having gone to Croatia.
In the Season 14 episode, "Coming Home", Moretti quit after less than a year in the role to deal with personal problems concerning his son who was bipolar.
After Moretti's departure, Dr. Skye Wexlater joined the team as acting chief during the Season 14 episode, Skye's the Limit and although Greg Pratt had been appointed department head, things ended in tragedy when Pratt died from injuries sustained in an ambulance explosion that the Turkish mafia had caused.
Chiefs of Emergency Medicine
- unknown - 1995 : David Morgenstern.
- 1995 : William Swift.
- 1995 - 1998 : David Morgenstern.
- 1997 - 1998 : Kerry Weaver (acting/interim).
- 1998 - 1999 : Amanda Lee.
- 1999 : Robert Romano (acting).
- 1999 - 2003 : Kerry Weaver.
- 2003 : Robert Romano.
- 2004 - 2005 : Susan Lewis.
- 2005 - 2007 : Luka Kovač.
- 2007 : Kevin Moretti.
- 2007 - 2008 : Skye Wexler (acting).
- 2008 - present : Cate Banfield.
- 1994 - 1995 : Mark Greene.
- 1995 - 1996 : Kerry Weaver.
- 1996 - 2001 : unknown.
- 2001 : Jing-Mei Chen.
- 2001 - 2003 : John Carter.
- 2003 - 2005 : unknown.
- 2005 - 2006 : Archie Morris.
- 2006 - present : unknown.
Known Attending Physicians
- unknown - 1995 : Marty Cannon.
- unknown - 1998 : David Morgenstern.
- 1995 - 2002 : Mark Greene.
- 1996 - 2007 : Kerry Weaver.
- 1999 - 2008 : Luka Kovac.
- 2001 - 2005 : Susan Lewis.
- 2002 - 2004 : Jing-Mei Chen.
- 2004 - 2005 : John Carter.
- 2006 - 2008 : Gregory Pratt.
- 2006 - present : Archie Morris.
- 2008 - present : Simon Brenner.
- 2008 - present : Cate Banfield.
- 2008 : Abby Lockhart.