Trips to the ER for Seniors Can Often Be a Tipping Point

January 11, 2018

Kaiser Health News (1/11, Graham) reports that an elderly person’s visit to the ER “often signals a serious health challenge and should serve as a wake-up call for caregivers and relatives.” Researchers have found that seniors are 14 percent more likely to acquire a disability within six months of visiting an ER. The article adds that the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) is launching an accreditation program for ERs in February that will certify “at least a minimal level of geriatric competence.” Dr. Kevin Biese, chair of the board of governors for ACEP’s initiative offered a recommendation, advised, “Ask for a room, instead of letting your loved one stay out in the hallway – a horrible place for seniors at risk of delirium. Tell staff, who may have put Mom in the hallway because she’s a fall risk and they want to keep an eye on her, ‘I’ll watch Mom and make sure she doesn’t get out of bed.’”

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Last modified on 01/12/2018

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