The Emergency Department is Overflowing With Opportunity

Posted by BestPractices on November 4 2013
Written by Steve Whitehurst, Chief Customer and Strategy Officer, BerylHealth | October 02, 2012

In a recent study it was concluded that the U.S. healthcare system should employ simple solutions that will improve patient care and save costs due to poorly managed care transitions, which are currently contributing to high spending. As we begin to assess the past year and look forward to strategic planning for 2013, follow-up communications and more efficiently managed care coordination are areas of significance; both in the hospital and in the emergency department. With 50 percent of hospital inpatient admissions coming through the ED, and 40 percent of patients who are treated and released by ED not having a primary care physician, we look to the opportunity the ED presents for continual patient communication.

Patients don’t see the emergency department as a portion of their experience separate from the total care continuum, especially if they’re admitted. With a growing number of uninsured patients, the emergency department becomes the easiest access point for care, especially if patients are without a primary care physician, and the entry point for new patient populations into the system. Hospitals and health systems are beginning to panic instead of looking at the opportunity this presents for a new patient population and in-revenue opportunities. Providing solutions to ensure top-scoring patient satisfaction, reducing readmissions and identifying ways to capture revenue is key in a time when reimbursement penalties seem inevitable and the main focus today.

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