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ACEP Raises Alarm over Emergency Department Closures
Date:2/23/2010

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"As President Obama releases a health care reform proposal, America's emergency physicians are reminding national policymakers that the dangerous problems facing emergency patients are not going away.  In fact, things are getting worse, and a recent GAO report said emergency patients who need care in 1 to 14 minutes are being seen in more than twice that timeframe [37 minutes].  

"The President's proposal calls for investing in community health centers, but we also need to invest in community emergency departments.  Most people seeking emergency care have the symptoms of a medical emergency and need to be there.  Emergency visits are increasing at rapid rates, and as our population ages, even more people will need these vital services.

"However, Deaconess Hospital in Cincinnati is closing its emergency department because millions of dollars in losses have made sustaining it impossible. The venerable St. Vincent's Hospital in New York City, an icon of emergency care for years that treated many victims of the terrorist attacks of 9/11, announced it too may close the emergency department.  Right in the shadow of the U.S. Capitol, United Medical Center in Washington, D.C., is also on the brink of failure.


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SOURCE American College of Emergency Physicians
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