18 June 2013

DOCTORS IN THE EMERGENCY DEPARTMENT PLAY A SIGNIFICANT ROLE IN CONTROLLING HEALTHCARE COSTS

Over the past seven years, hospital admissions from the emergency department have increased by 17 percent. Because of this, doctors in the emergency department have become key players in managing healthcare costs. With the emergency department providing frontline healthcare, emergency physicians are behind half of all hospital admissions.

Hospital inpatient care accounts for 31% of the nation’s healthcare costs. And since the average cost of an inpatient stay is about 10 times the cost of a comprehensive emergency visit, emergency physicians’ decisions on who to admit to the hospital is critical to hospital cost savings.

Jay A. Kaplan, M.D., an emergency physician for more than 30 years, says the emphasis should be on providing emergency departments with the resources they need to successfully adapt to this new trend. Kaplan says that easy access to a patient’s history, medications, allergies and test results help in keeping costs down.

To find out more about emergency physicians as key players in controlling hospital costs, read the full article at http://www.healthleadersmedia.com/content/PHY-292383/ED-Physicians-Key-to-Half-of-Hospital-Admissions.

What other ways can emergency medicine doctors help decrease overall healthcare costs?