0.5 hours | ACCME, ANCC
According to published research, the elderly have the highest rate of ED use among all adult patient groups. Poor outcomes, such as death or an ICU admission shortly after discharge from the ED, can be catastrophic events. Data on outcomes after elderly patients are discharged from the ED are important patient safety and quality of care issues, but few analyses have investigated the specific risk factors that lead to these events. Previous studies have used clinical data to identify predictors of poor outcomes after discharge from the ED. While this is an important first step in understanding the problem, previous research has been limited. Most studies on this issue do not have follow-up information because the elderly may go to other hospitals or EDs to receive care after they are discharged. Much of the available research lacks direct access to patient records and cannot identify patient and process-of-care characteristics that were inherent to ED encounters.