ACEP: Frequent ED Users Need Coordinated Care
Emergency room physicians say overcrowding and visits from frequent users could be reduced with a coordinated approach to care.
The American College of Emergency Physicians released several studies Tuesday analyzing data about patients who visit EDs frequently. Robert O'Connor, MD, FACEP, and ACEP board member as well as Chair of Emergency Medicine at the University Of Virginia School Of Medicine in Charlottesville, says each study focuses on a different aspect of frequent ED visits, and as a result pointed to a difficult, complex problem.
WEBCAST: Avoid 30-Day Readmissions, Improve Care Transitions
Date: Oct. 16, 2012. Get real-world solutions, including how to create community outreach programs and understand the higher role of HIT in coordinating care.
"Despite the widespread belief that these patients can be easily redirected in the healthcare system for less expensive care, and that these patients are somehow abusing the system, the reality is much more complicated," says O'Connor.
Patients considered frequent ED visitors varied from study to study because each used a different definition. One California study considered a frequent user to be a one who visited the ED two to three times within six months, while another study in Wisconsin identified a frequent user as someone visiting an ED seven or more times within a year.
O'Connor did not express concern about the lack of uniformity among the studies. In some ways, it reinforces ACEP's position that frequent users are not abusers of the ED.
- CVS Ramps Up Retail Clinics with Provider Affiliations
- 4 Tectonic Shifts Shaking Up Healthcare
- Medical Errors Third Leading Cause of Death, Senators Told
- As States Regulate Provider Competition, Common Threads Emerge
- Chronic Disease Care Costs Get Bipartisan Attention
- Contradictory Obamacare Rulings Issued by Appellate Courts
- As HIPAA Breaches Accelerate, Tools Lag
- Roundtable: Life After a Healthcare Organization Acquisition
- Mayo Tops U.S. News Best Hospitals Rankings
- CareFirst Announces PCMH Program Results