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EMERGENCY DEPARTMENT: Use of home-based care

Just over half of the 682 emergency physicians who responded to this 2015 survey indicated that they have chosen home-based care options (overseen by a nurse or physician) instead of observation stays or inpatient admissions for elderly patients who visit the emergency department.  This is not a frequent occurrence  – the majority of ED physicians reported doing this for 5 or fewer patients per month.  The most common barrier to home-based care after an ED visit was reported to be the sense of an unsafe or unstable environment at home.  Patients who were recommended most frequently for home-based care had these diseases or conditions:

  • cellulitis
  • urinary tract infection
  • diabetes
  • pneumonia, community acquired

Note: This is a medical journal article reporting the results of a survey.  The authors are with West Health Institute (La Jolla, CA) and UC San Diego Medical Center.

Source: Stuck, A.R., and others. (2017, November). National survey of emergency physicians concerning home-based care options as alternatives to emergency department-based hospital admissions. The Journal of Emergency Medicine, 53(5), 623-628.  Click here for free full text: http://www.jem-journal.com/article/S0736-4679(17)30488-2/pdf  Posted by AHA Resource Center (312) 422-2050, rc@aha.org