Institute:Office of National Coordinator (ONC) Workforce Training Curriculum
Component:Introduction to Health Care and Public Health in the U.S.
Unit:Delivering Health Care - Part 2
Lecture:Retail Clinics, Urgent Care Centers, and Emergency Departments as Venues for Health Care
Slide content:Effects of Overcrowding In The ED Delays in the treatment of serious medical conditions Increased waiting times Reduced promptness and quality of pain management Hallway boarding of admitted patients Ambulance diversions Decreased physician productivity 8
Slide notes:The sheer number of people who are seen in emergency departments in the U.S. has led to overcrowding. Overcrowding in the ED is associated with delays in the treatment of serious medical conditions, such as heart attacks or strokes. Overcrowding also increases waiting times for people with minor illnesses and reduces the promptness and the quality of pain management for people with acute pain. Patients who are admitted to the hospital may be boarded in the hallways while waiting for rooms to open up. Ambulances may be diverted from full emergency departments toward more distant facilities that are able to take in patients. Finally, overcrowding decreases physicians productivity within emergency departments. All of these are significant issues, and the problem is only getting worse. 8