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Study predicts potential surge in medically-attended injuries
Date:7/29/2013

sured kids were related to overexertion, but this injury mechanism did not cause uninsured children to seek care.

Winston and her colleagues based their estimates on recent injury care data and the assumption that those new to insurance would have a probability of medically attended injury that equals that of those who already have insurance. With these assumptions, they predict that each year as many as 510,553 additional children and young adults could be seen for injury treatment in outpatient settings, nearly 195,838 in Emergency Departments or admitted to hospital, with another 30,689 being attended to through phone- only encounters. Winston cautions that the actual health system utilization rates and sites of care may vary as newly insured people may access care differently from those who are already insured.

"Health care delivery systems across the US need to have sufficient numbers of general and pediatric healthcare providers who are trained in treating moderate trauma and injury and can staff urgent carecenters, health centers, primary care practices, call centers, and emergency departments," says Dr. Winston. "In keeping with the aims of the Affordable Care Act, the goal should be that all young patients who seek care for their injuries get the appropriate care at the right time and right place."

The study authors recommend several steps health care systems can take to manage the potential increase in patients and avoid both the expensive overuse of emergency services and the long-term effects on communities of inadequately treated injury:

  • Train medical students and residents with relevant course content on diagnosis and treatment of concussions, musculoskeletal injury, sports medicine and open wound care.
  • Expand programs such as Poison Control Centers and call centers, and remote medical command for triage and treatment of non-life-threatening injuries.
  • Prevent injuries to children by allocating federal a
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Contact: Dana Mortensen
mortensen@email.chop.edu
732-299-0233
Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
Source:Eurekalert

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