JAMA Forum: Transforming Emergency Departments to Better Care for Elderly Patients Print
Written by Gilbert Benavidez, MPH, Melissa Garrido, PhD, Austin Frakt, PhD   
Friday, 14 September 2018 08:40
Many people don't realize that if an elderly individual needs to go to an emergency department (ED), how the person is cared for may differ greatly, depending on  which ED they visit. Unless they've discussed the issue with a clinician, they're likely unaware that not all EDs are designed, prepared, or staffed to meet the complex care needs of older adults.
Fortunately, a recent initiative by the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) to accredit geriatric emergency departments is encouraging EDs to better address the needs of older patients and is providing guidance on which EDs are best able to care for such patients.
Older patients present with unique physical, pharmacological, cognitive, and social needs. They are at greater risk than younger patients of falls and fractures, have high rates of using 5 or more medications concurrently (polypharmacy), and often present with Alzheimer disease or related dementias (ADRDs).
Last Updated on Friday, 14 September 2018 08:43