Strategies To Address Frequent Emergency Department Use

Strategies To Address Frequent Emergency Department Use Wednesday, October 23, 2013

In many hospital emergency departments (EDs), a small percentage of patients account for a disproportionate share of visits and resources. Sometimes referred to as ED “super users,” these individuals often lack a regular source of care and typically present to the ED with non-urgent conditions, often with a variety of underlying medical, behavioral, and psychosocial needs that cannot be addressed in the ED.

The featured Innovations describe three programs that implemented various strategies to provide, manage, and coordinate care and social services for individuals who are frequent ED users, leading to improved outcomes and reductions in ED use.

The featured QualityTools include a campaign in Washington State to help reduce preventable emergency room visits and redirect care to the most appropriate setting, information and tools for ED staff in managing care for specific groups of ED super users, and a toolkit to help organizations and advocates plan, develop, and sustain medical respite programs.

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