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Decision-support program helps keep seniors out of the emergency room

Mary Ann Liebert, Inc./Genetic Engineering News

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IMAGE: Population Health Management is an authoritative peer-reviewed journal published bimonthly in print and online that reflects the expanding scope of health care management and quality. The journal delivers a comprehensive,... view more

Credit: © Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers

New Rochelle, NY, September 18, 2014-An Emergency Room Decision-Support (ERDS) program can significantly reduce ER visits and hospital admissions among older adults on Medicare. This could have important economic implications, helping to reduce the nearly 33% of avoidable ER visits that contribute to about $18 billion in unnecessary healthcare costs each year. Details of a successful ERDS program that had a positive return on investment are published in an article in Population Health Management, a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers. The article is available free on the Population Health Management website until October 18, 2014.

Jessica Navratil-Strawn and colleagues from Optum (Golden Valley, MN; Ann Arbor, MI; and Phoenix, AZ), Richard Migliori MD, UnitedHealth Group (Minnetonka, MN), and Charlotte Yeh, MD, AARP Services (Washington, DC), show that participation in an ERDS program by Medicare users who previously had three or more visits to the ER within a 12-month period could improve care coordination, decrease ER visits and hospital admissions, and increase office visits compared to similar individuals not involved in ERDS. In the article "An Emergency Room Decision-Support Program That Increased Physician Office Visits, Decreased Emergency Room Visits, and Saved Money," the authors report that for every dollar invested in the ERDS program, $1.24 in healthcare costs was saved.

"While visits to the ER are climbing around the nation, we need solid research like this study to help us make important policy decisions and to better allocate healthcare resources," says Editor-in-Chief David B. Nash, MD, MBA, Dean and Dr. Raymond C. and Doris N. Grandon Professor, Jefferson School of Population Health, Philadelphia, PA.

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About the Journal

Population Health Management is an authoritative peer-reviewed journal published bimonthly in print and online that reflects the expanding scope of health care management and quality. The Journal delivers a comprehensive, integrated approach to the field of population health and provides information designed to improve the systems and policies that affect health care quality, access, and outcomes. Comprised of peer-reviewed original research papers, clinical research, and case studies, the content encompasses a broad range of chronic diseases (such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, chronic pain, diabetes, depression, and obesity) in addition to focusing on various aspects of prevention and wellness. Tables of Contents and a sample issue may be viewed on the Population Health Management website. Population Health Management is the official journal of the Population Health Alliance.

About the Publisher

Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers is a privately held, fully integrated media company known for establishing authoritative peer-reviewed journals in many promising areas of science and biomedical research, including Journal of Women's Health, Journal of Men's Health, Diabetes Technology & Therapeutics, and Metabolic Syndrome and Related Disorders. Its biotechnology trade magazine, Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (GEN), was the first in its field and is today the industry's most widely read publication worldwide. A complete list of the firm's 80 journals, books, and newsmagazines is available on the Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers website.

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