Study: Substance Abuse Associated With Frequent ED Visits

Substance abuse is associated with frequent emergency department visits, according to an Annals of Emergency Medicine study.

Researchers studied the characteristics of less frequent (one to six visits), frequent (seven to 17 visits) and highly frequent (18 and more visits) ED users. They found frequent users accounted for 9.9 percent of all ED visits and highly frequent users were responsible for 3.6 percent of visits.

Factors associated with frequent users were substance abuse and a high number of visits to primary care and specialist physicians. Highly frequent ED users were also likely to have substance abuser problems but were less likely to use non-ED healthcare services compared with frequent users.

More Articles on Healthcare Utilization:

Ensuring Continuity of Care to Prevent Unnecessary Hospital ED Visits
Study: Data-Based Tool Can Accurately Predict ED Visits

Ohio ED Utilization Outpaced Other States by 34% in 2010

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