Most emer­gency de­part­ments short on sur­gi­cal spe­cial­ists

Modern Healthcare - - Late News -

In­ad­e­quate cov­er­age by sur­gi­cal spe­cial­ists plagues most U.S. emer­gency de­part­ments, ac­cord­ing to a study pub­lished in the jour­nal Aca­demic

Emer­gency Medicine. In a sur­vey the au­thors be­lieve is the first to poll a na­tional sam­ple of emer­gency-depart­ment di­rec­tors, 74% re­sponded that they ex­pe­ri­enced in­ad­e­quate on-call cov­er­age by spe­cial­ists. The per­cent­age was lower among teach­ing hos­pi­tals (68%) and ge­o­graph­i­cally high­est in the South (81%). More than 60% of re­spon­dents re­ported los­ing around-the-clock cov­er­age in at least one spe­cialty in the past four years; the prob­lem was most com­mon at hos­pi­tals in the North­east (75%) and the South (66%). More than a quar­ter of re­spon­dents said their cur­rent on-call cov­er­age was un­re­li­able. The spe­cial­ists hard­est to se­cure were trauma sur­geons, neu­ro­sur­geons, plas­tic sur­geons and hand sur­geons.

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