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on call, on guard?

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on call, on guard?

Postby Heidita » Mon Nov 02, 2015 6:13 pm

Mary will know the answer to this for sure ;)

My student was telling me that his aunt who is a nurse is always on call.

I said this means: they can call her at any time and she has to go to the hospital.

My question is: What do you say "estoy de guardia"?

You can be "de guardia" being
    a nurse: a nurse at home, a call might or might not come;
    a nurse working at the hospital on guard (??);
    a pharmacy open at night or even 24 hours or
    the pharmacist himself working at night.
    a firefighter
    a policeman....

I am especially interested in the nurse working at night ..would that also be: the nurse on call, even though she is actually there?
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Re: on call, on guard?

Postby Pesta » Mon Nov 02, 2015 7:03 pm

A nurse or doctor is "on call" whether they are at the hospital or clinic, or at home.
Usually, "on duty" is used, and indicates that they are definitely at the professional location, not at home or out to lunch.

"On guard" and "on watch" is more narrowly appropriate when guarding or watching is the primary activity. For example, a soldier is on guard or on watch duty.

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Re: on call, on guard?

Postby Jen » Mon Nov 02, 2015 7:07 pm

This is a really interesting question.

My understanding is that being on call is being on standby for emergencies. If someone doesn't necessarily have to work unless they're called they are 'on call', you can also be on call during the day or weekends. If someone actually has to work at night, and has duties whether there's an emergency or not, then they are 'on nights', or 'working nights'. A person can be on call even if they stay at their place of work, but they would normally have somewhere to sleep between call outs.

I've never heard of a nurse being 'on guard'. That sounds completely wrong to me unless they are literally guarding the hospital in some way :D.

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Re: on call, on guard?

Postby Heidita » Mon Nov 02, 2015 7:10 pm

Pesta wrote:

"On guard" and "on watch" is more narrowly appropriate when guarding or watching is the primary activity. For example, a soldier is on guard or on watch duty.


I had seen the on watch bit on my crime series.

For example a suicide watch.

a woman is currectly on "suicide watch" after being declared guilty of killing her daughter. Crazy society. :bang
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Re: on call, on guard?

Postby Heidita » Mon Nov 02, 2015 7:12 pm

Jen wrote: there's an emergency or not, then they are 'on nights', or 'working nights'. A person can be on call even if they stay at their place of work, but they would normally have somewhere to sleep between call outs.


Wow, I had never heard "on nights"...I watch too many American TV shows :w: :doh:
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Re: on call, on guard?

Postby lorenzo » Tue Nov 03, 2015 9:12 pm

As far as I know, "on guard" doesn't exist: it's "en guard" and comes directly from French.
All of my posts regarding Spanish are just guesses: I don't speak Spanish.

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Re: on call, on guard?

Postby Heidita » Wed Nov 04, 2015 6:45 am

Hmm, it doesn't exist? Pesta used it...hmmmm

I am going to call Mary to this thread, she should know :)
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Re: on call, on guard?

Postby saffron » Wed Nov 04, 2015 9:51 am

I think Lorenzo is thinking of 'en garde' a French term used in fencing and sometimes said as a joke telling someone to pay attention.
With soldiers I would say they are on guard duty.
So far as professionals if you are on call you have to be contactable by phone and ready to advise on the phone or attend somewhere in person. Once you arrive at the place you are on duty.
I know it from law - doctors and lawyers are available to be called to the Police station to see or advise people detained. During the day there are lawyers at court and the duty lawyer may stay at court doing other work until required.
In many cases it is called the out of hours service.
Doctors always seem to refer to it as being on call but lawyer friends would say ' I cannot have a drink I'm duty tonight' knowing if they had a drink they would be called and if no drink no call.
With lawyers they receive a small sum for being available but then charge if called.
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-INpBnRnFOQQ/V ... uardia.jpg
I note in Spanish it is also used for A&E (ER in the USA)
corrections welcomed to my Spanish or English

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Re: on call, on guard?

Postby lorenzo » Wed Nov 04, 2015 10:21 am

When I was growing up, you could be on guard duty or on your guard, but apparently on guard has been accepted as English. I should of known better and aksed the internet before posting.
All of my posts regarding Spanish are just guesses: I don't speak Spanish.

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Re: on call, on guard?

Postby Pesta » Wed Nov 04, 2015 1:34 pm

I have heard "on guard", but I agree with lorenzo that "to be on your guard" is more common.

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Re: on call, on guard?

Postby saffron » Wed Nov 04, 2015 3:03 pm

I agree 'be on your guard' is be careful is the usual time on guard is used. It is more usual to say they are on guard duty or use the gerund and say they are guarding the castle etc.
Possibly if a tourist asked me about a soldier in a sentry box I would say he is 'on guard' but I don't use it much.
Doesn't always go to plan.

http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2015/04/ ... 298491.jpg
corrections welcomed to my Spanish or English

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Re: on call, on guard?

Postby Heidita » Wed Nov 04, 2015 5:32 pm

saffron wrote:
So far as professionals if you are on call you have to be contactable by phone and ready to advise on the phone or attend somewhere in person. Once you arrive at the place you are on duty.


Well, I was watching a film this afternoon where a very angry woman said:

You were screwing around when I was on call at the hospital.


So she was working. I guess this is different in England then?
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Re: on call, on guard?

Postby lorenzo » Thu Nov 05, 2015 10:28 am

In the US, some people say they are on call after they've been called in. This is in order to distinguish it from normal working hours.
All of my posts regarding Spanish are just guesses: I don't speak Spanish.

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Re: on call, on guard?

Postby Jen » Thu Nov 05, 2015 6:55 pm

Here a doctor is on call whether they're called in or not. So if they're called in, they're still classed as being on call.
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Re: on call, on guard?

Postby Lector Constante » Thu Nov 05, 2015 9:07 pm

I love this. Anyone, anytime who may be called away from what they are doing (whether it is filling out forms at a work station or resting at home) to perform a (usually professional) service can be said to be "on call". The doctor who is only doing rounds in the hospital may be said to be "on call" for certain emergencies (in the same hospital). One does not normally say the 24-hour towing service is "on call"; if the proprietor of that service described it that way, it would be a bit pompous. Nonetheless, the doctor (even while he is on call) and the towing service guy (who is stretching it to say he is on call) should both be "on guard" against ID theft. The phrase "on guard" is an adjective meaning aware of some possible danger and ready to take preventive measures. Doubtless it has its origin in the fencing term, and carries a similar alert, "Be ready!"
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