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An orderly is a general duty hospital employee. They are available for such duties as:
- Moving patients and material (such as laundry and meals) around the hospital
- Performing clean up of spills, particularly of urine and feces to assist the janitorial staff
- Assisting with front line security when there is difficulty with a disruptive patient
- Performing heavy lifting, including patients
- Assisting with hospital emergency codes by retrieving and moving equipment
- Assisting with care that poses no risk to the patient, such as shaving hair for surgery
Their use is being phased out in the United States in favour of Certified Nurse Assistants