A survey has found that one in five patients who attempted after-hours contact with their primary care provider reported that doing so was “very difficult” or “somewhat difficult.” These patients were significantly more likely to have an ED visit than those who reported less difficulty with after-hours contact (37.7% vs 30.4%). The authors suggest that increased support for primary care practices to offer or coordinate after-hours care could help reduce rates of ED use.

Abstract: Health Affairs, December 12, 2012 (online).