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Predicting Adherence After Emergency Department Visits

Predicting Adherence After Emergency Department Visits

Millions of Americans who use the ED each year are subsequently referred for outpatient care and follow-up with other physicians or clinics and prescribed necessary medications following their ED visit. Adherence with recommendations from ED providers is critical to ensuring that proper treatment of the initial condition be continued upon discharge. Adherence is also critical for identifying potential misdiagnoses and managing possible treatment failures and complications. Despite its importance and cost to the healthcare system, studies suggest that compliance with recommendations by ED patients in the United States is frequently poor. Research has provided little insight on factors that may help predict non-compliance with recommendations from ED physicians. “In the emergency setting, clinicians may benefit from developing a better understanding about why patients don’t always follow recommendations from their physicians,” says Camille Broadwater-Hollifield, PhD, MPH.   Taking a Closer Look In a study published in the American Journal of Emergency Medicine, Dr. Broadwater-Hollifield and colleagues sought to determine predictors of adherence to medical recommendations after an ED visit. They conducted a prospective, observational study at an urban medical center that involved 422 ED patients. Participants provided baseline demographic data as well as information about their insurance status, whether or not they had a primary care physician (PCP), and the impact of costs of care on their ability to follow medical recommendations. Patients were contacted at least 1 week after their initial ED visit and answered questions about adherence to medical recommendations from ED personnel. According to the results, nearly 90% of study participants self-reported that they had complied with at least one recommendation made during their ED visit. “Patients who...
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