Day One refers to the second episode of the first season of the medical drama series ER which was broadcast originally from NBC on September 22, 1994. It was directed by Mimi Leder and written by John Wells.

"Day One"
Season 1, Episode 2
Day One
Air date September 22, 1994
US viewers 23.0 M
Written by John Wells
Directed by Mimi Leder
Episode Guide
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24 Hours
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Going Home


Mark's wife arrives in the ER with the news that she has passed her bar exams but several members of the staff interrupt their intimate celebration. Greene treats an elderly woman whose husband isn't ready to let her go. It's been eight weeks since Hathaway's attempted suicide, but Doug Ross has yet to bring himself to visit the woman he went out with for two years. Susan Lewis saves a newborn who is brought into the ER choking. She also argues with the psychiatric attending who refuses to admit a patient suffering from dementia. Carter finds himself having to care for a group of German tourists who are suffering from food poisoning. He also treats a young flirt with a rash. Benton treats a recent surgery patient and finds his correct diagnosis overturned by the man's physician. Susan Lewis treats a family struck by a drunk driver. The husband and daughter will survive but there is little hope for the woman. The drunk driver is also brought in suffering from only a few scratches.

NBC Description

CARTER'S FIRST SAVE: Carter's first full day finds him saving a patient from cardiac arrest, his first such save. Later, he treats a coworkers rash and winds up going home with her.

Meanwhile, the ER is inundated with both a tour group and a wedding party suffering from food poisoning from the same German restaurant.

When Dr. Greene helps his wife, Jennifer (Christine Harnos), "celebrate" passing the bar, they get caught having sex in the ER bathroom.

Dr. Ross visits a recovering Nurse Hathaway (JULIANA MARGULIES).

Cast and Characters




  • This episode occurs two months after the pilot; its mentioned in relation to how long Nurse Hathaway has been recovering from her suicide attempt.
  • Notice in this episode the beginning of one marriage and the ending of another; look to the right of the screen in the scene where the old husband and wife are crying about her impending death, and you can see the newlyweds sitting on one of the beds.
  • Helicopter N365UC, seen in this and subsequent episodes, is registered to and operated by University of Chicago Helicopters.
  • This episode, as well as "24 Hours " and "Hit and Run ," all begin the same way, with one of the main cast members being awakened in Exam 8 at the end of the hallway. In this case, Susan Lewis is woken up by Wendy.


  1. "Nielsen Ratings - September-December 1994 " (PDF). USA Today. (May 15, 2015).