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Stress, even at low levels, may be an early indicator of future emergency room visits, according to a new study co-authored by Dr. José Pagán, Director of NYAM’s Center for Health Innovation, published in Academic Emergency Medicine.
Previous studies have typically focused on the relation between serious psychological distress and emergency room use, without assessing the volume of emergency room use or examining nonserious levels of psychological distress. The objective of this study was to explore the association between emergency room utilization volume and the full spectrum of psychological distress.
The study found psychological distress, even at nonserious levels, to be associated with increased odds of having at least one emergency room visit in the following year. These results highlight the need to develop new responses to better manage or avert emergency room use, not only for adults with serious psychological distress but also for those who are experiencing even mild symptoms of psychological distress.
Stockbridge EL, Wilson FA, Pagán JA. Psychological Distress and Emergency Department Utilization in the United States: Evidence from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey. Acad Emerg Med. 2014 May;21(5):510-519. doi: 10.1111/acem.12369. (View abstract)
Posted on June 20, 2014
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