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Emergency Room Overcrowding - Essay Example

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Overcrowding in the ER Instructor University Date The emergency department is a fundamental organ in a majority of health care facilities and is charged with the uphill task of providing medical interventions for patients who present themselves without prior appointment…
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Emergency Room Overcrowding
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Download file to see previous pages Owing to the unplanned nature of patient attendance, the ER is prone to overcrowding as medical personnel are overwhelmed by sudden influx of casualties. Overcrowding in the ER is highly prevalent across the United States and the situation worsens in times of catastrophic disasters and accidents. The entire population regardless of their age, gender or financial status are affected by crowding in health facilities. Under normal circumstances, overcrowding is believed to occur as a result of a myriad of reasons that interrelated in more ways than one. The lack of adequate facilities in a health care setting limits the capacity of an institution to cater for the needs of the ever-increasing number of patients. A majority of hospitals lack enough inpatient beds to cater for the unplanned patient attendance at the emergency room that may require admission for further management (McNew, 2013). Overcrowding has also been attributed to enormous population growth over the years without the expansion of key supporting social services. Moreover, the ER is considered as a safety net for the uninsured following the economic hardships that have hit the country in recent years. In light of this, it crucial that adequate resolution are put forth in order to avert a looming crisis in the already troubled health sector. Failure to a quick resolution is bound to effect the quality of health care services by causing delays, which may result to loss of life. In addition, staff burnout are common in overcrowded emergency rooms, thus diminishing the quality of care while enhancing patient discomfort and dissatisfaction. As a result, veteran health care personnel shelf ER duties in search of better opportunities in other departments or facilities. This is followed by enormous shortage of on-call specialist, which limits access to primary health care (American College of Emergency Physicians, n.d.). In light of the above few consequences, it is critical that relevant authorities generate a clear resolve concerning overcrowding in the emergency rooms, which should be implemented to the letter. As illustrated, overcrowded emergency rooms provide an opportunity for improvement through properly versed action plans that seek to eradicate the problem by its roots. Based on the management action plan adopted, the main objective maintains as enhancing efficiency in all affected health care facilities. One cannot enhance efficiency without defining and establishing the root cause of the problem at hand. Therefore, having identified the factors that contribute to ER overcrowding, paves way for a systematic implementation of reforms in medical facilities. The action plan hopes to establish policies that are meant to ease the congestion in the ER by providing alternative solutions to cater for the needs of patients. Such policies will see the restructuring of relevant departments within health care facilities in order to accommodate a higher number of patients. In essence, the action plan should empower emergency rooms to handle more patients at any given period. In so doing, the quality of services should improve translating to increased efficiency. The above expectations can be assessed in a number of ways including customer feedback and opinion on the quality of service. Patients or their next of kin will be asked to rate the conduct and handling accorded to them by medical personnel as well as the supporting staff (Travaglia, 2009). This is provides an ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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