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State-by-State Report Card on Support for Emergency Care Issued — Physician’s First Watch

Medical News |
January 17, 2014

State-by-State Report Card on Support for Emergency Care Issued

By Joe Elia

The American College of Emergency Physicians gives a D+ to the overall conditions and policies under which the U.S. provides emergency care (not the quality of that care). The last grade, in 2009, was C–.

In a press release, ACEP president Alex Rosenau says: "People are in need, but conditions in our nation have deteriorated since the 2009 Report Card due to lack of policymaker action at the state and national levels." Among its recommendations, the college will ask Congress to withhold funds from states that don't support motorcycle helmet laws or 0.08% blood alcohol limits.

The District of Columbia topped the list with a B–, followed by Massachusetts, Maine, and Nebraska. Slated for tutoring were Wyoming (F), Arkansas (D–), and New Mexico (D).

Asked to comment, Ron Walls, an emergency medicine physician withNEJM Journal Watch said: "Although necessarily somewhat subjective, this report nonetheless raises a clear and legitimate alarm about the condition of our emergency care system."

Reader Comments (2)

Brown, j. MD Physician, Family Medicine/General Practice, little cubbyhole in big building

Unfortunately for patients, most clinics and hospitals have the big dollar as their boss. There are exceptions.

Lemmo PA Other Healthcare Professional, Emergency Medicine, Urgent Care

The ER staffing problems includes training and retention of good nurses and doctor that are leaving and looking for greener pastures. I left the ER in 2007. My mother has been in the ER twice in the past year the care was terrible. I was telling them what tests to order and treatment that was needed. My niece a NICU nurse educator from Ohio State was with me and couldn't believe how bad the nurses were at not following appropriate protocols for medical emergencies The Hospitalist where equally bad as I had to fire them and consulted the doctors I new would appropriately care for my mother. It looks like the bigger the hospital systems are only caring about how much money they can generate .Staffing is poor but there are hiring freezes at most institutions.

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