Non–emergency department interventions to reduce use of emergency departments

Added June 20, 2020

Citation: Morgan SR, Chang AM, Alqatari M, et al. Non–emergency department interventions to reduce ED utilization: a systematic review. Academic Emergency Medicine 2013 Oct;20(10):969-85.

What is this? The COVID-19 pandemic is placing a strain on healthcare services. Existing research on interventions aimed at reducing emergency department use may provide useful information for policy makers.

In this systematic review, the authors searched for qualitative research on non-emergency department interventions aimed at reducing the use of emergency departments (ED). They restricted their search to articles published in English and did the search in 2013. They included 39 studies, which were observational (34 studies) or randomized trials (5).

What was found: The non-ED interventions with the greatest number of studies showing reductions in ED use include patient financial incentives and managed care.

The non-ED interventions with the greatest magnitude of reductions in ED use were found in patient education.

The unintended consequences of non-ED interventions on increased demand for other types of healthcare services, health outcomes and financial effects are uncertain.


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