Periods of high ED crowding appear to increase inpatient mortality, lengths of stay (LOS), and costs, according to results of a review of nearly a million ED visits resulting in admission. Patients admitted during periods of high ED crowding had a 5% greater likelihood of inpatient death, 1% higher costs per admission, and about 1% longer LOS. Periods of high ED crowding were associated with an excess of 300 inpatient deaths, 6,200 hospital days, and $17 million.

Abstract: Annals of Emergency Medicine, December 5, 2012.