Ease ER overload – Opinion – USATODAY.com

Ease ER overload – Opinion – USATODAY.com
Reforms needed to improve doctor access

By Kevin Pho

Emblematic of soaring health care costs, which are projected to reach $3 trillion by 2011,is the nationwide crisis of emergency department overcrowding. More than $18 billion is wasted annually on unnecessary visits to the ER,with volume rising by 32% and wait times almost doubling to one hour during the past decade.Relieving this strain will be critical to any health care reform.

Contrary to popular belief, it is not just the uninsured who are utilizing emergency services. A recent study in the Journal of the American Medical Association showed that patients with health insurance were primarily responsible for the increase of emergency services over the past decade. Lack of access to an available doctor is the major reason.

Kevin, MD continues his takeover of the bedblogosphere with another well-written Op-Ed in USA Today.

Good work, Kevin!


  1. I love the CareNow business model with late hours and paging 20 minutes before your appt. My insurance covers them and I have used them a few times. Once my daughter and I had the flu, made our appointments, 2 hour wait, went home to rest, then got up when we were paged.

    It is really nice since you don’t have to miss work, but you can take care of your family and not have to beg to be seen.