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Patient education and emergency room visits

Alyson DeSalvo (Medical College of Virginia Hospitals, Richmond, Virginia, USA)
Sandi Binda Rest (Medical College of Virginia Hospitals, Richmond, Virginia, USA)
Tammy Knight (Medical College of Virginia Hospitals, Richmond, Virginia, USA)
Mary Nettleman (Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine, Richmond, Virginia, USA)
Steve Freer (Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine, Richmond, Virginia, USA)

British Journal of Clinical Governance

ISSN: 1466-4100

Article publication date: 1 March 2000

Abstract

Patients visit emergency rooms for urgent and non‐urgent care. Because emergency room visits are more costly than visits to primary care clinics and are less likely to involve preventive care, third party payers and institutions have always tried to shift patients away from the emergency room and towards primary care clinics where appropriate. Hypothesizes that an intervention based in an adult primary care clinic might enable this, especially if it involved patients who used both the clinic and the emergency room. Surveys patients to determine why they used the emergency room and to identify barriers to using the primary care clinic instead. Based on the survey results, an intervention was developed to facilitate use of the primary care clinic. Discusses the methodology used in the survey and analyses results. Concludes that it is difficult to change patient behaviour to fit the demands of the health care system. Possibly, it would be better to change the system to fit the behaviour patterns of the patients.

Keywords

Citation

DeSalvo, A., Binda Rest, S., Knight, T., Nettleman, M. and Freer, S. (2000), "Patient education and emergency room visits", British Journal of Clinical Governance, Vol. 5 No. 1, pp. 35-38. https://doi.org/10.1108/14664100010333017

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