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EMERGENCY MEDICINE IN THE NEWS — AROUND FLORIDA
Stand-alone shands ER coming to tower road
The Gainesville Sun
UF Health Shands Hospital is planning a second free-standing emergency room in the west Gainesville area.
The hospital system has plans for a nearly 10,100-square-foot, $12 million emergency department at 7405 Archer Road. The site near the intersection of Archer and Tower roads is in close proximity to many residential subdivisions along Archer and Tower, as well as Haile Plantation. UF Health Shands purchased the property in late 2014 for $2 million
Study: 23 percent of adults with coverage underinsured
Health News Florida
Nearly a quarter of U.S. adults who were insured all last year lacked adequate protection from big medical bills based on their income, according to Commonwealth Fund research.
The nonprofit foundation estimates that about 31 million people between the ages of 19 and 64 were underinsured due in part to the out-of-pocket expenses they have to pay for care. That includes deductibles, or payments a patient has to make before most coverage begins.
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No solutions likely soon from Florida commission on healthcare
A commission Gov. Rick Scott created this month is facing off with hospitals as it looks for ways to make government spending on healthcare more efficient.
But after the first meeting of the Commission on Healthcare and Hospital Funding, it’s clear that solutions won’t come until after the June 30 deadline for the Legislature to pass a budget, including on health spending. There’s a lot of information for the panel to collect and analyze, Chair Carlos Beruff said.
ACEP Advocacy Program microsite — Sign up today!
FCEP Members, the ACEP Advocacy Program microsite is now available at: https://www.acepadvocacy.org. This resource may be used to stay informed on key issues affecting emergency medicine, sign up for the 911 Legislative Network, and find your legislators.
Commission on Healthcare and Hospital Funding
The Agency for Health Care Administration hosted a meeting of the Commission on Healthcare and Hospital Funding on May 20, 2015. The Commission was created by the Governor’s Executive Order Number 15-99, to investigate and advise on the role of taxpayer funding for hospitals, insurers, and health care providers, and the affordability, access, and quality of healthcare services they provide to Florida families as a return on taxpayer investment. The data collected from this meeting can be accessed at: www.healthandhospitalcommission.com
ABEM EMS APPLICATION
ACEP and NAEMSP are planning to again partner and offer the EMS Subspecialty Board Review courses before the ABEM exam in the Fall. We are looking at offering the review course at 3 locations, Atlanta, Dallas, and then in Boston the weekend before the ACEP15 educational courses begin on Oct. 23-25. We don’t have exact dates on the Atlanta or Dallas course yet but will post them as soon as they are finalized.
Rick Murray, EMT-P
Director, Dept of EMS and Disaster Preparedness
American College of Emergency Physicians
EMERGENCY MEDICINE IN THE NEWS — NATIONAL
Smoking and drug abuse could more than triple annual ER visits
Smokers are four times more likely than non-smokers to become frequent visitors of emergency rooms. That is one of the findings uncovered by a preliminary study led by Jessica Castner, a University at Buffalo emergency room utilization researcher. The research – which sought to shed light on whether patients are replacing visits to their primary care physicians with trips to hospital ERs– also found that Americans with chronic diseases use both services equally and that, overall, medical care visits have soared in recent years.
Women more likely to be hospitalized after asthma emergency care
U.S. research shows that women who attend the emergency department (ED) with acute asthma are almost twice as likely to be admitted to hospital than men despite several measures of asthma control, treatment and severity being more favourable in women.
“These findings continue to reflect the inadequacy of current clinical and public health measures to manage female patients with asthma,” the researchers write in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology.
The painkiller sending adults 55+ to the ER
Tramadol, a prescription painkiller thought to be less risky than other narcotic pain meds, has caused a sharp spike in emergency room visits, especially among patients 55 or older, two new government reports have found.
Tramadol is typically used for the management of moderate to severe pain, such as for after surgery and for ongoing pain from arthritis. It is the active ingredient in such brand name medications as Ultram, Ultracet, ConZip, Ryzolt and Rybix ODT.
Researchers find patients who frequent ED have higher mortality, outpatient visits
Patients who frequent the emergency department repeatedly have higher mortality rates and a greater number of hospital admissions and outpatient visits, compared with non-frequent ED users, according to recently published data. “Our results suggest that, despite heterogeneity, frequent users are a distinct and high risk group. Depending on the definition employed, they may include subgroups of patients with mental health and addiction issues, homelessness or unstable housing, chronic diseases … and patients who make frequent visits with conditions that may require transient increased needs."
Sepsis rivals pneumonia, heart failure for readmissions
Severe sepsis causes hospital readmissions at a rate comparable to more commonly addressed conditions such as pneumonia and heart failure, according to a study presented at the 2015 American Thoracic Society International Conference. While previous research has analyzed quality measures associated with sepsis, such as length of stay, researchers sought to specifically analyze its effect on 30-day readmission rates. The bloodstream infection, which can cause organ failure, contributes to up to half of all hospital deaths, according to research published last year.
Weed candy is sending more children to the hospital
By Denise A. Valenti
They look, smell and taste like our favorite candies, but marijuana candy edibles can be a real danger to children.
The sweet confections are often packaged to appear like the popular treats with which toddlers and children are familiar. This appearance is not an accident — the marijuana candy products are designed to attract and entice the consumer. But when children ingest marijuana, the results can be serious and even life-threatening.
Paramedics steer non-emergency patients away from ERs
Medscape (free login required)
Paramedic Ryan Ramsdell pulled up to a single-story house not far from Reno’s towering hotels and casinos in a nondescript Ford Explorer.
No ambulance, no flashing lights. He wasn’t there to rush 68-year-old Earl Mayes to the emergency room. His job was to keep Mayes out of the ER.
Mayes, who has congestive heart failure and chronic lung disease, greeted Ramsdell and told him that his heart was fluttering more than usual. “I had an up-and-down night,” he said.
Angina: Routine hospitalization probably unnecessary
When emergency department work-ups fail to confirm acute coronary syndrome, hospitalization for observation is unlikely to turn up a cardiovascular cause for chest pain. Only four of 7,266 angina patients with ambiguous findings in the ED had a life-threatening cardiovascular event or death when hospitalized for observation, and half of those events were possibly caused by treatment.
Work-life balance in healthcare: Realign your priorities
By Catherine Iste
As a healthcare professional, your work requires you to be there for others, but how can you do that effectively if you haven't taken care of yourself? Now that you are acutely aware of where your hours go, it's time to look at what you can do realign your time with your priorities.
Lisa Cole, MS, RN, FNP, has spent more than 35 years in the healthcare industry. Her current business, Re-Source, focuses on helping people live and die well via lifestyle change, patient advocacy and care coordination. Through her work, Cole has learned three areas that can help reduce stress now and help you be more present as a caregiver.
The importance of preventing burnout among physicians and nurses
Hospitals & Health Networks
Imagine this scenario: You are a hospital CEO walking the halls of your facility when you overhear a group of physicians or nurses talking about the stress, exhaustion and frustration of their jobs and the system. One of them states without hesitation that she can't wait to leave the profession entirely, and would make sure her son or daughter never considered medicine as a career. Would you have faith that she could devote her full attention to administering care to your patients?
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